The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) has published its 2015 Global Liveability Ranking of 140 cities around the world to reveal which ones are best, and worst.

The survey evaluates key urban centres based on 30 criterion including the environment, safety, stability, infrastructure, culture, education and healthcare.

Those that are rated highly tend to be “mid-sized cities in wealthier countries with a relatively low population density”. They also “foster a range of recreational activities without leading to high crime levels or overburdened infrastructure.”

Compared with 2010, the overall liveability score across the world slid by 1 percentage point due to a lower average score for safety and stability.

The EIU said: “Civil unrest, acts of terror and violence have triggered stability declines around the world. High-profile terrorist shootings in France and Tunisia, and the on-going actions of Islamic State in the Middle East have created a further heightened threat of terrorism in many countries.

“Meanwhile, protests over matters such as police brutality, democracy and austerity have also raised the threat of civil unrest in many countries, notably the US where the deaths of a number of black people in police custody have led to widespread protests and accusations of racism.

“Events in Ukraine, and the subsequent sanctions imposed by many countries, continue to have knock-on effects for cities such as Kiev, Moscow and St Petersburg.”

What about the UK capital, which doesn’t appear in the top ten? The EIU said: “Global business centres tend to be victims of their own success. The ‘big city buzz’ that they enjoy can overstretch infrastructure and cause higher crime rates.

“New York, London, Paris and Tokyo are all prestigious hubs with a wealth of recreational activity, but all suffer from higher levels of crime, congestion and public transport problems than would be deemed comfortable.”

Here are the top ten cities for liveability:

1. Melbourne

2. Vienna

3. Vancouver

4. Toronto

=5. Calgary

=5. Adelaide

7. Sydney

8. Perth

9. Auckland

=10. Helsinki

=10. Zurich

The five least liveable cities are:


2. Lagos

3. Port Morseby

4. Dhaka

5. Damascus