New data has revealed the best – and worst – cities in the world for achieving work-life balance. And London is far from leading the pack…
We all know what a lack of it looks balance, though. Always eating lunch at our desks, never taking all of our holiday days and checking our emails before we’ve even brushed our teeth are all recognisably unhealthy behaviours that we’re *probably* all guilty of.
The good news is that it seems at least some parts of the world know how to achieve a healthy work/life balance.
Data from software company Kisi compared 50 cities worldwide, recognising which of them encourage a healthy balance both directly and indirectly through policies and urban infrastructure, while also considering the impact of the pandemic.
They studied three elements: work intensity, society and institutions and city livability – all of which they say contribute to work-life balance, during and beyond the pandemic.
Here’s what they found.
Best cities in the world for work-life balance
- Helsinki, Finland
- Oslo, Norway
- Zurich, Switzerland
- Stockholm, Sweden
- Copenhagen, Denmark
- Ottawa, Canada
- Munich, Germany
- Vancouver, Canada
- Amsterdam, The Netherlands
- Sydney, Australia
Perhaps unsurprisingly, it was some of the Scandinavian countries that came out on top. Famed for their progressive cultural attitudes and well-rounded living, northern Europe consistently ranks highly when it comes to quality of life. Finland was even voted the happiest country in the world.
“These cities had the best social, cultural and structural systems in place in order to provide their residents with the most well-rounded work-life balance, in terms not only of work intensity, but also livability, well-being and rights,” Kisi commented.
Most overworked cities in the world
It really wasn’t good news for London: it ranked in the top ten of most overworked populations, and 20th out of the 50 countries for overall work/life balance. However, we did rank highly for remote working and inclusivity and tolerance, so it’s not all bad.