And The Award for Best Place in the World Goes To …

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Reuters

Last year, Vienna topped the quality of living list. Could the Austrian capital come out ahead of the rest of the world yet again? Jawohl.

According to global consultancy Mercer, who published the annual list Wednesday, Vienna was victorious based on 39 factors over the 10 categories such as political stability, banking services, schools, restaurants and record of natural disasters. And that part of the planet is clearly the place to base yourself: seven cities in Austria, Germany and Switzerland make the top 10. Silver and bronze positions, as it were, go to the Swiss cities of Zurich and Geneva.

As for America, Honolulu comes in highest in a not exactly stellar 31st position, closely followed by San Fransisco (joint 32nd), Chicago and Washington (joint 45th) and New York scrapes into the top 50 at number 49. Interestingly, all the places are measured on a point-scoring index against the Big Apple, which is given a base score of 100 (Vienna received 108.6 points).

The purpose of the list — sadly, the reason isn’t bragging rights — is to aid governments and major companies compensate employees fairly when giving them foreign assignments. But instead of perusing the list at your leisure, let us save you the hassle and get to the nitty-gritty: out of the 221 cities that were graded, the bottom of the standings makes for miserable reading for Baghdad. The war-ravaged Iraqi capital scored a lowly 14.7.

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