Fact Check

Israel Ranked 4th While Palestine Ranked 'at the Bottom' in 2024 World Happiness Index?

The annual ranking of the happiest countries in the world was published on March 20.

Published March 20, 2024

 (X account @DrEliDavid)
Image courtesy of X account @DrEliDavid
A user on X accurately stated Israel ranked fourth while Palestine ranked "at the bottom' in the 2024 World Happiness Index published on March 20.
What's True

The 2024 World Happiness Report published on March 20, 2024, said Israel actually dropped from fourth in 2023 to fifth in 2024. Palestine ranked 103rd out of 143 countries.

What's False

Israel did not rank fourth (again) in 2024. It dropped one place on the index to fifth. Further, Palestine did not rank "at the bottom of the list."

On March 20, 2024, X (formerly Twitter) user @DrEliDavid claimed the 2024 World Happiness Index was published "today" and Israel was ranked fourth, while Palestine was ranked at the bottom of the list (archived here).

In his post, David included a bar chart displaying the top 10 happiest countries in the world, which showed Israel in fourth place between Iceland in third and the Netherlands in fifth.

The same claim also appeared elsewhere on X.

It is true the 2024 World Happiness Report was published on March 20, and that Israel ranked highly on that list. However, Israel ranked fifth on this year's index, whereas in 2023 it ranked fourth. And Palestine did not rank at the bottom, as David stated. Therefore, we have rated this claim as a "Mixture" of truth.

Page 15 (to get there in PDF type "17") of the 2024 World Happiness Report shows Israel came in at number five, while page 17 (see previous note but type "19") shows Palestine ranked 103rd out of 143 countries, so not "at the bottom."

Similarly, page 34 (type "36" in PDF) of the 2023 World Happiness Report shows Israel ranked fourth, while page 36 (type "38") shows Palestine came in at number 99.

The 2023 report shows the bar chart that David was referring to.


Helliwell, John F., et al. World Happiness Report 2023. 20 Mar. 2023, https://worldhappiness.report/ed/2023/.

---. World Happiness Report 2024. 20 Mar. 2024, https://worldhappiness.report/ed/2024/.

Nick Hardinges is a London-based reporter who previously worked as a fact-checker at Reuters.

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