Everyone loves a list as long as it’s not things that have to be done. If it’s a list of rankings, folks like to see if and where they place. Today we have the 18th annual Mercer Quality of Life list of global cities as reported by the UK Dailymail.

I’m fascinated by this compilation and a little suspicious of it at the same time. The top ten slots are 70% European. The U.S. lags behind, with San Francisco coming in at no. 28. The methodology behind the rankings was based on the relevant safety of business travel. Local governments will go out of their way to keep money flowing in. Also, many larger cities may have built up a good corporate environment in spite of problems locals have to deal with. Thus, a city may rank higher than one would think based on its quality of life for its everyday residents.

Vienna, Zurich, and Auckland (1, 2 and 3) are fantastic places. However, many of those European cities in the top ten and top 100 have been experiencing major problems in the past few years due to mass invasion (some say migration but that’s not accurate) and related Islamic terrorism.

Paris and Lyon are 37 and 38, respectively. Twice last year Paris suffered serious attacks by ISIS. The French capital is still under a state of emergency. Crime is getting so bad in many cities the police are abandoning their patrols – even the fearsome German Polizi. Not completely cowed by their insane leaders, European men are beginning to resist. Groups like the Sons of Odin are rapidly gaining popularity and are “filling in” for the police when trouble arises. The people of Europe, never a crowd to ultimately tolerate invasion very well, are reaching the breaking point.

Governments are about to change. The EU itself may be dramatically reformed or abolished. Even the popular press is beginning to call things what they are. One of Poland’s largest magazines, wSieci (The Network), just featured a cover story, The Islamic Rape if Europe. The last time ordinary Poles expressed this much solidarity with Germany the subject was Danzig and the results were far from peaceful. Makes you wonder if business travel experts study history.


wSieci, Feb., 2016.

San Francisco, London, Paris, New York, etc. are fine, world class cities. However, I noticed a lot of contenders with serious problems – like crime. Chicago is just ahead of New York on the list despite being on pace to double  its already sky high murder rate this year. Houston, Miami and Atlanta are grouped together in the 60s. Again, they’re fine places but they have parts one wouldn’t want to walk through and driving in all three can be a nightmare. Businesses in Atlanta are starting to require employees to carry guns.

Detroit, tied with Hong Kong for no. 70, caught my eye. There is still a lot of major business in the motor city but not much else. Where else in America can one purchase a house for $1? If that house collapses in a newly grown forest and no one is around to sell drugs, is it still a ghetto?

The list gets downright laughable. Tripoli, Damascus, Khartoum, and Baghdad and others listed are active war zones. Granted these are at the bottom of the list but, still, numerous decent places go unmentioned. It makes you wonder if business travel experts read the news.

The whole list:

1 Vienna, Austria

2 Zurich, Switzerland

3 Auckland, New Zealand

4 Munich, Germany

5 Vancouver, Canada

6 Dusseldorf, Germany

7 Frankfurt, Germany

8 Geneva, Switzerland

9 Copenhagen, Denmark

10 Sydney, Australia

11 Amsterdam, Netherlands

12 Wellington, New Zealand

13 Berlin, Germany

14 Bern, Switzerland

15 Toronto, Canada

16 Melbourne, Australia

17 Ottawa, Canada

18 Hamburg, Germany

19 Luxembourg, Luxembourg

20 Stockholm, Sweden

21 Brussels, Belgium

22 Perth, Australia

23 Montreal, Canada

24 Stuttgart, Germany

25 Nurnberg, Germany

26 Singapore, Singapore

27 Adelaide, Australia

28 San Francisco, United States

29 Canberra, Australia

30 Helsinki, Finland

31 Oslo, Norway

32 Calgary, Canada

33 Dublin, Ireland

34 Boston, United States

35 Honolulu, United States

36 Brisbane, Australia

37 Paris, France

38 Lyon, France

39 Barcelona, Spain

39 London, United Kingdom

41 Milan, Italy

42 Lisbon, Portugal

43 Chicago, United States

44 New York City, United States

44 Tokyo, Japan

46 Edinburgh, United Kingdom

46 Kobe, Japan

46 Seattle, United States

49 Los Angeles, United States

49 Yokohama, Japan

51 Washington, United States

52 Madrid, Spain

53 Birmingham, United Kingdom

53 Rome, Italy

55 Glasgow, United Kingdom

56 Pittsburgh, United States

57 Philadelphia, United States

58 Osaka, Japan

59 Aberdeen, United Kingdom

60 Leipzig, Germany

61 Minneapolis, United States

62 Nagoya, Japan

63 Dallas, United States

64 Belfast, United Kingdom

65 Houston, United States

66 Miami, United States

67 Atlanta, United States

68 St. Louis, United States

69 Prague, Czech Republic

70 Detroit, United States

70 Hong Kong

72 Pointe-a-Pitre, Guadeloupe

73 Seoul, South Korea

74 San Juan, Puerto Rico

75 Dubai, United Arab Emirates

76 Ljubljana, Slovenia

77 Budapest, Hungary

78 Montevideo, Uruguay

79 Vilnius, Lithuania

79 Warsaw, Poland

81 Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

82 Bratislava, Slovakia

83 Port Louis, Mauritius

84 Taipei, Taiwan

85 Durban, South Africa

86 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

87 Athens, Greece

88 Limassol, Cyprus

89 Tallinn, Estonia

90 Riga, Latvia

91 Busan, South Korea

92 Cape Town, South Africa

93 Buenos Aires, Argentina

94 Santiago, Chile

95 Johannesburg, South Africa

96 Panama City, Panama

97 Victoria, Seychelles

98 Zagreb, Croatia

99 Wroclaw, Poland

100 Taichung, Taiwan

101 Shanghai, China

102 Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei

103 Johor Bahru, Malaysia

104 Tel Aviv, Israel

105 San Jose, Costa Rica

106 Brasilia, Brazil

107 Muscat, Oman

108 Monterrey, Mexico

109 Bucharest, Romania

110 Doha, Qatar

111 Noumea, New Caledonia

112 Nassau, Bahamas

113 Tunis, Tunisia

114 Asuncion, Paraguay

115 Sofia, Bulgaria

116 Rabat, Morocco

117 Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

118 Beijing, China

119 Guangzhou, China

120 Amman, Jordan

121 Sao Paulo, Brazil

122 Istanbul, Turkey

123 Lima, Peru

124 Kuwait City, Kuwait

125 Manaus, Brazil

126 Casablanca, Morocco

127 Mexico City, Mexico

128 Quito, Ecuador

129 Bangkok, Thailand

130 Bogota, Colombia

131 Windhoek, Namibia

132 Colombo, Sri Lanka

133 Manama, Bahrain

134 Chengdu, China

135 Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

136 Manila, Philippines

137 Nanjing, China

137 Shenzhen, China

139 Hyderabad, India

139 Xi’an, China

141 Belgrade, Serbia

142 Jakarta, Indonesia

142 Gaborone, Botswana

144 Pune, India

145 Bangalore, India

146 Chongqing, China

147 Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago

147 Qingdao, China

149 Lusaka, Zambia

150 Chennai, India

151 Kingston, Jamaica

152 Guatemala City, Guatemala

152 Mumbai, India

152 Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

155 Hanoi, Vietnam

156 La Paz, Bolivia

157 Shenyang, China

158 Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina

159 Skopje, Macedonia

160 Kolkata, India

161 New Delhi, India

162 Dakar, Senegal

163 Libreville, Gabon

164 Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

165 Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

166 Accra, Ghana

167 Moscow, Russia

168 Jilin, China

169 Kampala, Uganda

170 Vientiane, Laos

171 Cairo, Egypt

172 Managua, Nicaragua

173 San Salvador, El Salvador

174 Saint Petersburg, Russia

175 Blantyre, Malawi

176 Almaty, Kazakhstan

176 Kiev, Ukraine

178 Maputo, Mozambique

179 Tirana, Albania

180 Beirut, Lebanon

181 Cotonou, Benin

182 Yerevan, Armenia

183 Banjul, Gambia

184 Nairobi, Kenya

185 Caracas, Venezuela

186 Tegucigalpa, Honduras

187 Algiers, Algeria

188 Tbilisi, Georgia

189 Djibouti, Djibouti

190 Minsk, Belarus

191 Kigali, Rwanda

191 Havana, Cuba

193 Islamabad, Pakistan

194 Yaounde, Cameroon

195 Phnom Penh, Cambodia

196 Douala, Cameroon

197 Baku, Azerbaijan

198 Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

199 Lahore, Pakistan

199 Luanda, Angola

201 Yangon, Myanmar

202 Karachi, Pakistan

203 Tehran, Iran

204 Lome, Togo

205 Tashkent, Uzbekistan

206 Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire

207 Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

208 Ashkhabad, Turkmenistan

209 Harare, Zimbabwe

210 Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan

211 Lagos, Nigeria

212 Abuja, Nigeria

212 Dushanbe, Tajikistan

214 Dhaka, Bangladesh

215 Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso

216 Tripoli, Libya

217 Niamey, Niger

218 Antananarivo, Madagascar

219 Bamako, Mali

220 Nouakchott, Mauritania

221 Conakry, Guinea

222 Kinshasa, Congo, Democratic Republic of

223 Brazzaville, Congo, Republic of

224 Damascus, Syria

225 N’Djamena, Chad

226 Khartoum, Sudan

227 Port-au-Prince, Haiti

228 Sana’a, Yemen

229 Bangui, Central African Republic

230 Baghdad, Iraq

– Dailymail.

I hope your city fared well and you fare well in it. Maybe these are just numbers. There’s no place like home; know your place, home.