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Global Peace Index: Austria is Third Most Peaceful Country

Published: March 4, 2015; 12:30 · (Vindobona)

The latest Global Peace Index analyses the state of peace around the world. It identifies the most and least peaceful countries, trends in violence and conflict, and calculates the economic impact of violence. The top three most peaceful countries are Iceland, Denmark and Austria. Small and stable democracies make up the top ten most peaceful countries. New Zealand, Canada and Japan are the only non-European countries in the top ten.

Take a look at the world's most peaceful countries: Iceland, Denmark and Austria are the top three / Picture: © Vision of Humanity

The 2014 Global Peace Index shows a continuation of the seven year trend for declining levels of peace globally.

  • Since 2008 51 countries have improved while 111 countries have deteriorated in peace
  • The world has become 4% less peaceful since 2008
  • Europe remains the most peaceful region, with 14 of the top 20 most peaceful countries
  • Syria has replaced Afghanistan at the bottom of the index, with its Global Peace Index score falling 84% since 2008
  • Georgia showed the largest improvement in peace levels
  • The total economic impact of containing violence is estimated to be US$9.46 trillion in 2012

The three least peaceful countries are South Sudan, Afghanistan and Syria. Levels of peace in South Sudan deteriorated the most since 2013, falling 16 places from last year.


According to the Global Peace Index, the world global average peace score deteriorated slightly since last year, mainly due to global increases in terrorist activity, the number of conflicts fought and the number of refugees and displaced people.

Economic Impact

The economic impact of containing and dealing with the consequences of global violence last year was estimated to be US$9.8 trillion. This is equivalent to 11.3% of global GDP – twice the combined GDP of African countries.


This years’ Global Peace Index includes a new statistical modelling risk tool which identifies countries at risk of descending into violence and unrest in the next two years. The new methodology analyses a data set stretching back to 1996, and compares countries with the performance of states with similar institutional characteristics.

The ten countries most likely to deteriorate in peace in the next two years are Zambia, Haiti, Argentina, Chad, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Nepal, Burundi, Georgia, Liberia and Qatar.

What commentators are saying about Austria:

"Austria is only peaceful if you are white..."

"Austria is 1 of the best countries from all sides if not the best on this planet! A piece of heaven on earth I LOVE AUSTRIA. And yes, Austria is a very peaceful country and the freedom of speech is very evaluated and highly protected by the government."

"Our luck that most of the people don't know that Hitler was from austria"

"Or how far back in modern history are you going ? Austria are you kidding me? Austro-Hungary empire, the Habsburgs and the birth place of hitler that should bring it up a few notches"

"Austria's police brutality, the rightwing extremist party and its influences in the judicial system and on the police, not to forget the very racist immigration policy and acceptance of fascist tendencies makes Austria far less peaceful than one might think. PS: I live in Austria."

"If peaceful country index is measured only by the recent history of all these countries and their contemporary statehood, the results could be considered as accurate"

"Wasn't Hitler from Austria?"

"Eurobarometer 2010 data shows that only 31% of people in Iceland believe there is a god. Values for Denmark and Austria are 28% and 44%. I know that correlation does not imply causation, but the correlation is there and it is a very strong one. Even if it bothers your religious friends."

"im Englishman living in Austria na its not friendly."

"I think weather and population plays a role in making a peaceful country??"

"Keiner kennt Mauthausen hat nur ein Kurzzeitgedächtnis."

"Austria is one of the most peaceful countries. ***I love Austria***"