Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A Fountain of Data

Did you know that Seattle is the 8th most innovative city in the Americas according to 2thinknow, an Australian Innovation Agency? Copenhagen is listed as 5th in Europe and 8th in the world, Hong Kong is deemed the most innovative place in Asia and Oceania, ranking 18th in the world, closely followed by Melbourne at 19th in the world... you can find all this and much more at the Innovation Cities Indices, here.

For another perspective on innovation, there is an India-based information source called the Global Innovation Index, in which Iceland emerges as the most innovative country in the world, with the other Scandinavian countries all in the top 10. New Zealand, Canada and US take spots #9, 11 & 12 respectively.

Then there's Newsweek, which offers you their perspective on the best countries in the world... Finland is #1, Australia is #4, USA is #11, and South Korea scores a little bit higher than France (15 and 16 respectively). One of the coolest things about this interactive infographic is that you can compare countries by factors such as 'gender gap' and 'freedom house' (which includes freedom of press). It gives you a big picture look at how countries perform in fields like education, political environment and quality of life.

For much more detailed discourse on the worldwide gender gap, look no further than the Gender Equality Index. Sweden, as we already know, comes up on top, with Rwanda and the Bahamas being surprisingly similar to its result... Germany, New Zealand and the Netherlands round out the top 10 with the usual Scandinavian suspects. 

Since we're comparing cities, check out which are the cleanest cities in the world. If you were to relocate solely using this factor, Calgary would be the destination of choice. It's followed by Honolulu and Helsinki.

You want to know about 'the world's most livable cities'? Wikipedia has information on not one but three of these indexes! Check it out here. Cities mentioned by two out of the three surveys (in the top 10) are Vienna, Vancouver, Munich, Sydney, Melbourne, Zurich, Auckland and Helsinki. Vienna was actually mentioned by all 3!

And the final set of statistics I'm going to throw at you is that of the United Nations' Human Development Index, and The World's Happiest Countries.

Hope that gives you as much food for thought as it continues to give me! ;o)

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