Germany has been deemed the best country in the world, according to a new report published today.

Using an assortment of 75 criteria that look at a country’s progress in areas such as entrepreneurship, cultural influence, business-friendly policies and economic progress, Germany beat out Canada and the United Kingdom to take the top spot in the inaugural “Best Countries” rankings, as compiled by U.S. News & World Report in partnership with BAV Consulting and Wharton. The report was based on a global survey of 16,000 people, and was launched at the World Economic Forum in Davos.


Germany’s leading position was due to a number of factors. They were the country with the best score in the “entrepreneurship” sub-ranking, informed by high marks given to their infrastructure, education and skill level of their labor force. Other categories Germany posted strong scores include “power” — which combines military might and economic success to score a country based on its global influence — and “quality of life”.

The publication also highlighted the ranking of the United States, which placed fourth on its list. While U.S. flexed its muscles with a high “power” and “cultural influence” score, the publication docked the country points for its relatively stagnant education levels.

“Canada and the United Kingdom do better than the U.S. in education. People don’t feel as comfortable about U.S. education as perhaps we’ve been led to believe,” Brian Kelly, editor and chief content officer at U.S. News and World Report, said in a statement.

The announcement comes on the heels of other awards for the nation. Last December, German Chancellor Angela Merkel was named TIME’s Person of the Year.