· France topped the list of most positive countries for the first time ever.
· The USA jumped back into the list in 2019 after missing out last year.
· Canada moved down to the sixth position from the top of the list within a year.
· Ethiopia, South Korea, Denmark, Costa Rica and Argentina are the regional winners.
· Global citizens continued to have positive projection for the world, for the second consecutive year.
· Australia, China and Germany are the only three countries that made it to all the previous lists of most positive countries.
France was crowned as the World’s Most Positive Country for the first time ever in 2019, according to the annual global index published by Daily Positive (D+), a unique online media organization from Australia for positive news.
The annual list of top ten most positive countries is compiled based on a positivity index comprised of a global expert panel rating, a D+ journalists rating, a global web poll and the number of positive news entries in 2019 on the D+ website.
The top 10 World’s Most Positive Countries for 2019 along with respective ranking points are as follows:
Figure: Top 10 World’s Most Positive Countries for 2019
Apart from this overall list of 10 most positive countries, D+ also published a list of regional positive countries from Africa, Asia, Europe, North America and South America. The regional winners were selected based on the same criteria used to select the overall winners but from a specific region outside of the top ten in the list.
France finally made it to the top of the list of world’s most positive countries in 2019. France has been intriguing with their positive accolades and accomplishments in the field of science, sports, adventure, economic development, arts, environment, among many others. According to the D+ global poll participants, France was seen as the leading voice in the European Union (EU) in 2019. Apart from that, French doctors have developed a brain-controlled external skeleton for support that helped a paralyzed man learn to walk again. French restaurant Mirazur was crowned as the world’s best restaurant by British trade magazine Restaurant. French inventor Franky Zapata became the first person to successfully cross the English Channel on a jet-powered hoverboard. The most powerful floating solar power plant in Europe was inaugurated at Piolenc in southern France, named the O’MEGA1 plant is a 17 megawatt (MW) solar plant, marking another exemplary milestone in the development of solar energy. Despite the current civil unrest in France, the economy maintained positive vibe compared to its neighboring countries.
Japan continued its impressive run from last year and climbed up to the second position. It is the highest ever position for Japan in the list of the most positive countries. Japanese architect Arata Isozaki won the 2019 Pritzker Architecture Prize – a prestigious award often called the Nobel Prize of the profession. A prototype of Japan’s next-generation Shinkansen bullet train codenamed ALFA-X, set to be the fastest train on wheels when it enters service, reached speeds of 320km per hour on a test run. Researchers from Keio University in Japan have created a robotic tail, dubbed Arque, for humans that’s designed to assist elderly maintain balance. Japanese scientist Akira Yoshino shared the Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2019 for the development of lithium-ion batteries.
Australia moved down one spot to the third position in the list of most positive countries compared to last year. One of the most notable points about Australia was it passed the year without any major economical or social concerns at home and abroad, in a year when national general election took place and international relationships seem to have grown with all the major allies. It is quite exemplary, when compared with all the other major economic powers from around the world, demonstrating stability and strength in its systems. On the other hand, Australian researchers have discovered immune cells that can fight all known flu viruses – creating the potential for the development of a world-first universal, one-shot flu vaccine. Australian immunologist Professor Jacques Miller won the prestigious Lasker Basic Medical Research Award 2019 for his contributions in the discovery of the roles of key immune cells – an award that is widely recognized as one of the highest international honors in medical research. Finally, Ashleigh Barty ended Australia’s 46-year wait for a French Open women’s singles tennis title in 2019.
The United States of America (USA) jumped back into the fourth position in the list after missing out last year. This amazing run was possible with the help of some fascinating positive research stories that came out of the USA. In a scientific first, American neuroengineers at Columbia University have created a system that translates thoughts or brain signals into intelligible, recognizable speech. A research group led by scientists from the Washington State University has found a way to turn daily plastic waste products into jet fuel. A biomedical engineering team at the University of Utah have created a prosthetic arm that can move and feel. A trio of Americans, Abhijit Banerjee, Esther Duflo and Michael Kremer, won the 2019 Nobel Economics Prize for their work in the fight against poverty.
China retained its fifth position in the list of most positive countries from last year in 2019. China’s Chang’e-4 probe touched down on the far side of the moon, becoming the first spacecraft soft-landing on the moon’s uncharted side never visible from Earth. Chinese scientists unveiled a battery-free pacemaker that generates its energy from the heartbeats of pigs in what could pave the way for an “implant for life” in humans suffering from heart defects. A new species of dinosaur named Ambopteryx longibrachium with bat-like wings has been discovered in China, shedding light on how dinosaurs evolved into birds. China’s first self-developed 4-seater electric aircraft, the RX4E, made a successful maiden flight in the northeastern Chinese city of Shenyang.
Canada moved down to the sixth position from the top of the list within a year, making it the biggest mover of all time from the top position in a year time. A prolonged, highly polarized and bitterly contested national general election in 2019 had taken its toll. In the midst of all these, Canadian researchers have invented a stable, affordable way to store fragile vaccines for weeks at a time at temperatures up to 40C, opening the way for life-saving anti-viral vaccines to reach remote and impoverished regions of the world. Canada’s parliament approved a bill banning the capture and breeding of cetaceans such as whales and dolphins. Canadian researchers have discovered what they believe is a novel drug, SR9009, target controlling the body’s repair responses after a heart attack. Nineteen-year-old Bianca Andreescu became the first Canadian to win a Grand Slam singles tennis title with an impressive win at the US Open against 23-time major champion Serena Williams.
England is in the seventh position despite all the concerns surrounding Brexit. Researchers in Oxford have carried out the world’s first gene therapy operation to tackle the root cause of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the UK’s most common cause of sight loss. English researchers have broken down DNA of world’s largest mammals to discover how whales defy the cancer odds. English actress Emily Beecham won the Best Actress Prize at the Cannes film festival for her performance in Little Joe. England won their first ever ODI Cricket World Cup beating New Zealand in the final at Lord’s. English scientists reversed ageing process in rat brain stem cells.
New Zealand moved up two spots from last year in the list of most positive countries and is in eighth position. New Zealand earned lots of praises on our global poll due to its response to the Christchurch mosque shooting. New Zealand ranked first in the Doing Business Index published by the World Bank Group indicating how easy it is to start and do business in the country. New Zealand officially banned single-use plastic shopping bags. New Zealand won the 2019 Netball World Cup beating Australia in the final in Liverpool.
Singapore made it to the ninth position in the list of most positive countries, slipping down two spots from last year. Singaporean researchers have created water-resistant electronic skin with self-healing abilities, that can be used in everything from water-resistant touchscreens to aquatic soft robots. A team of researchers from National University of Singapore (NUS) has developed a novel medical device, named MRegen, capable of harnessing a magnetic field to make muscle rehabilitation quicker and more comfortable. The World Economic Forum rated Singapore as the world’s most economically competitive country.
Germany held onto the last spot in the list of positive countries. Despite being present in each and every previous list of most positive countries, it is Germany’s lowest position in the list. Recent economic and political uncertainties did not help Germany’s race. However, Germany ranked as the second-best performing country, after the USA, with nine universities in the Reuters’ ranking of the World’s Most Innovative Universities, a list that identifies and ranks the educational institutions doing the most to advance science, invent new technologies and power new markets and industries. Arkona offshore wind farm with a capacity of 385 MW, a joint venture between Germany’s Eon and Norway’s Equinor, in the Baltic Sea was officially opened. The Spektr-RG telescope, a joint venture between Germany and Russia, that will map X-rays across the entire sky in unprecedented detail was successfully launched into orbit atop a Proton rocket.
D+ Most Positive Regional Countries 2019
Ethiopia for the second consecutive year was named as the most positive regional country of Africa. The Nobel Peace Prize 2019 was awarded to Ethiopian President Abiy Ahmed Ali for his efforts to achieve peace and international cooperation, and in particular for his decisive initiative to resolve the border conflict with neighboring Eritrea. Ethiopians planted more than 350 million trees in a single day as part of a campaign to fight deforestation and climate change, which officials believe is a world record. Ethiopian Airlines won the 2019 Best Cargo Airline-Africa Award at the Air Cargo News Awards held in London, UK.
Asia: South Korea
South Korea retained its regional title of most positive country in Asia in 2019. South Korea continued to pursue for a conclusive diplomatic solution with North Korea. Besides, South Korea launched the world’s first nationwide 5G mobile networks, which allows users to