Sweden is the best country in the world to live in for women, according to a new ranking from U.S. News & World Report.
Just in time for International Women's Day on Wednesday March 8, the media organisation surveyed more than 9,000 women as part of its wider 2017 Best Countries ranking in order to determine which of 80 countries around the globe are the best for women to live in.
The full 2017 Best Countries List surveyed 21,000 business leaders, informed elites, and general citizens to discover how 80 countries are perceived on a global scale for a range of criteria, from economic influence to citizenship and quality of life. The Best Countries for women scored highest on five of these attributes: human rights, gender quality, income equality, safety, and progression.
While Tunisia and Bolivia are the worst countries for females, according to the study, the best places to live as a woman span across the globe.
Scroll down to see the 23 best countries in the world to live in if you're a woman, ranked in ascending order.
23. Czech Republic: Gender equality is one of the key priorities of Czech governmental policy, making this the first city to make the list.
22. Singapore: An act called the Women’s Charter was passed in 1961 to protect and advance the rights of women and girls in Singapore.
21. Poland: Though it has restrictive abortion laws, the other criteria in the study make Poland one of the best places for women to live.
20. Portugal: Portuguese women have had full legal equality with men since 1976.
19. Italy: Gender equality within marriage was introduced in 1975, abolishing the dominance of the husband. Now, Italy is the 15th best country for women to live.
18. Spain: The country has been praised for its commitment to gender equality in more recent years, putting it in 18th place in the ranking.
17. Japan: Japanese women have been recognised as having equal rights to men since the end of World War II. Now, the country is trying to encourage more women to join its workforce.
16. United States: Congress has a record number of women in the United States in 2017, one of the factors that put it in 16th place for best country for women.
15. Ireland: Though it has traditionally been conservative, social norms in Ireland are changing, and it's now one of the best countries for women.
14. France: The country has made efforts to put an end to persistent discrimination against women, putting it in 14th place.
13. Luxembourg: The country was one of the first to allow women to vote, introducing equal voting rights in 1919.
12. United Kingdom: The UK has a female prime minister, Theresa May, and a population of women who actively fight for gender equality rights.
11. Germany: Chancellor Angela Merkel is proof that women can be just as powerful as men in Germany.
10. New Zealand: The country is a leader in peacekeeping, making it one of the best places for gender equality.
9. Austria: Rich in culture, this high-income democracy is the ninth best country in the world for women.
8. Australia: A country with high sporting participation among both genders, Australia has a high life expectancy for both females and males.
7. Switzerland: The country prides itself on its diversity, and its open attitude is reflected in its attitude towards women's rights.
6. Finland: The country was one of the first in the world to grant women the right to vote. It was also the first country to legalise universal suffrage.
5. Canada: Protecting women's rights in part of this North American country's domestic and foreign policy.
4. Netherlands: This country provides benefits to new mothers, including giving them access to a maternity nurse, with the cost (or part of it) covered by insurance.
3. Norway: Considered to be one of the most gender equal nations on the globe, mothers can take 35 weeks of maternity leave at full pay, or 45 weeks at 80% pay in Norway.
2. Denmark: With an earnings-related daycare system and one of the most flexible parental leave policies in the EU, Denmark is the second best country for women.
1. Sweden: Gender equality is one of the "cornerstones" of society in Sweden, making it the best country for women to live in. Nearly two-thirds of university degrees are awarded to women, and around three months of leave are given to each parent during parental leave.
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