It may be too early to expect President Donald Trump to fulfill his campaign promise of “making America great again,” but it's clear that he has his work cut out for him. A new ranking of the best countries shows America has fallen three spots to seventh place.
The ranking, released Tuesday by U.S. News & World Report in partnership with the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School and global brand consultants BAV Consulting, show the Unites States has lost its position as fourth best among world's best countries while Switzerland debuted at No. 1.
Among the 21,000 surveyed, 75% said they lost some respect for U.S. leadership after the 2016 presidential election.
The United States ranked lower than past years across multiple categories, including best for business, citizenship, adventure tourism, education, transparency and headquartering a corporation. However, the country remained No. 1 on the list of most powerful countries closely followed by Russia and China.
Nearly 90% of global survey respondents outside of the U.S. said that they paid attention to the 2016 U.S. election. Hillary Clinton would have won the global election, with nearly 60% of the global vote. Support for Donald Trump was highest in Russia (83%) and in China (54%).
The rankings evaluate 80 countries across a range of criteria, from power and economic influence to citizenship and quality of life, to capture how nations are perceived on a global scale.
“We wanted to capture how tumultuous political change can affect a country’s perceived standing in the world,” said Brian Kelly, editor and chief content officer of U.S. News, in a news relase. “Similar to what we have done with hospitals, universities and other institutions, the Best Countries portal pairs fact-based metrics with storytelling to help citizens, business leaders and governments better evaluate their countries and make sense of a range of important global issues.”
Switzerland debuts as the world’s top country, in part because of its progressive social systems, protection of human rights and business-friendly environment. Notably, it's one of five countries in the top 15 that are run by women: No. 1 Switzerland, No. 3 U.K., No. 4 Germany, No. 10 Norway and No. 12. Denmark.
Last years’ runner up Canada maintained its position this year while U.K. also held fast to its third position despite Brexit vote suggesting that the initial shock of its vote to leave the European Union may have stabilized.
Germany, last year’s No. 1 best overall country, slipped to No 4 after dips in three important categories: open for business, citizenship and quality of life. The nation was rocked by a range of events - from growing public anxiety over an influx of refugees to a string of deadly terror attacks.
More than 50% of survey respondents think the world has gotten worse in the last year, and more than 60% agree that there is a leadership crisis in the world today.
The top five countries overall are: