It was only in March of this year that I was reporting the latest Economist Intelligence Unit’s liveability rankings. At the time, there were very few changes, although Melbourne had slipped into second position from being third the previous two years.Image courtesy of vermininc
You can see how all Australian cities fared in that survey and you will also see, if you visit the page, that it is clearly referring to the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Liveability Poll 2011.
I also wrote about the results in February 2010, in a post strangely called Australia: Far Too Dangerous and Way Too Liveable.
My first ever post on the subject was called And the Best City Ever to Live In is… and went online in June 2009.
So, we are up-to-date, aren’t we?
As we speak today, still in 2011 obviously, it appears Melbourne, with the skill and stamina of a dark horse in a Grand National, has rallied up along the rails without any of us realising another survey was due and finally worn down long-time leader Vancouver to take first position.
Yes, Melbourne is now officially the best city in the world to live in having been behind Vancouver for 10 years.
How can this be?
It seemed to me that I must have made some kind of mistake. There was no other way of explaining how this could be. But when I looked into it, I discovered these posts from The Economist themselves….
There it is, for all to see. Two liveability surveys, from the same people in the same year, with different results. No wonder I got confused.
But maybe the answer is simple. Maybe they do the survey twice a year and just never told me.
Anyway, all that aside, here are the latest standings according to the Economist.
The latest top 10. (As at August 30th 2011)
To save you checking, it is the same top 10 as earlier in the year, with just a few positions having changed. Vancouver has dropped to third allowing Melbourne and Vienna to overtake it, and Sydney has leapfrogged Helsinki from the poll that appeared earlier in the year.
Austria aside, all the other entries in the top 10 list, Australia, Canada, Finland and New Zealand, can be considered low density population countries. Is that telling us something?
I think so, it was reading this in a newspaper in England years ago that made me really want to move to Australia…
London, by the way, was 53rd. It was 51st in 2009 and 54th in 2010.
But what’s happened to Brisbane?
Brisbane’s ‘decline’ in the rankings appears to have coincided with my arrival here. The city has slipped from 16th to 21st in that time. I’m trying not to take it personally.
Given Brisbane’s position, and how much I love living here, I should launch into some kind of counter attack to defend this city’s reputation. But I won’t, because I think 21st out of all the cities in all the world is a pretty high result anyway. The Economist, just like myself, clearly think Brisbane is a fantastic city.
I certainly wouldn’t swap it for any of the other cities on the list.