The 2012 Global Peace Index Map

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The 2012 Global Peace Index (GPI) is the sixth edition of the Institute for Economics and Peace study that looks at global levels of peacefulness. The GPI ranks 158 nations using 23 qualitative and quantitative indicators which evaluate three main criteria: the level of safety and security in society, the extent of domestic or international conflict and the degree of militarization. The Institute hopes the report will foster a better understanding of how researchers, policymakers, government and society can create a more peaceful world.

View the map after the jump.

This year’s index, released today, indicates the world improved in peacefulness for the first time since 2009. Other highlights:

    • Western Europe remains the most peaceful region with the majority of its countries ranking in the top 20.


    • Iceland is the most peaceful nation for the second year in a row.


    • North American, Latin American and sub-Saharan Africa countries all experienced gains.


    • The country showing the most improvement was Sri Lanka which jumped 30 places in the wake of the end of its civil war.


    • Syria experienced the biggest drop tumbling over 30 places to 147 on the list.


  • Somalia remained the least peaceful nation for the second year running.

Interact with the map to explore the state of peace around the world at the Vision of Humanity website. (via The Guardian Data Blog)

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  • Lakota Dot

    At least, it says the  the U.S. is gaining. Yeah!

  • Kevin

    Seems seriously skewed, with the U.S. military budget dwarfing all others’, the extent of our involvement (for good or ill) in other nations’ affairs, for our arms sales, foreign and domestic drones, reductions in our civil liberties (farewell, habeas corpus), etc. I’m not buying it.

  • Theblacksun

    The U.S should be down there close with Somalia.

  • Darkling Thrush

    We’ve exported US violence to Iraq and Afghanistan  😛

  • Leyson_t

    USA is least peaceful nation on earth.  Our government/military pillages, and does what they want at the expense of anybody else.  1/2 million dead innocent civilians in Iraq and Afghanistan since the start of the US occupation, all at the hands of the US military.  How was that fact not taken into account?  Does it balance out because we send AIDS research money to Africa?  Heck NO.  Doesn’t add up.  Oh the religious zealots.  Look at what they’ve done.  US is the most religious nation on earth, and the most violent too.  Whoops!

  • Wondering about Canada

    It will be interesting to see how Canada rates in a few years … I skimmed a news report this morning that suggested Stephen Harper, Canada’s prime minister, wants to erect military bases “around the world.” Link:–walkom-is-stephen-harper-s-global-military-policy-delusional-or-just-plain-mad

  • Kmalaga

    I believe Costa Rica should be worthy of special mention, too.

  • CaptRuss

    Whenever possible, the US exports it’s violence. To Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Yemen. This makes these countries less peaceful, and the US appears to be more peaceful. If you’re spending billions on defense, a lot of somebody’s gotta die to justify that. If this was a study on war-mongering and military belligerence, the US would surely be #1.

  • Lr

    We at the I Declare Wrold Peace project are quite excited about a meaurable improvement in peacefullness in 2012. We can all take responsibilityt o promote peace and make sur that momentum is achieved andmaintained

  • Lr

    Sorry for several typos:  most important should be the I Declare World Peace project.

  • Jsland1

    Western Europe is the most peaceful. I guess that’s not a currency which the Bond markets value….how vicious are they?

  • Jo

     This is skewed to make the west out to be peaceful.  Not a chance  of this being correct. The United Slaves  is the most barbaric war mongering country on the planet. It also has the highest gun related incidents in the world. Much more so than in the war zones.  Of the Muslim countries it has invaded.
    It has the highest prison population (pure violence) in the world and a clandestine drug war with thousands butchered monthly on its border to Mexico.  It is also planning a war on Syria and Iran. If it can talk Russia and China into looking the other way.

    All this plus FEMA concentration camps, drones in the sky, 80 million unemployed due to industrial outsourcing to china, and hundreds murdered by its fascist police state. Make the US out to be the most violent place to exist.

  • Barbara Bruce

    How about Canada?

  • Hawaii Seeker

    So biased, the Northern hemisphere  will become uninhabitable in 2012.

  • Hawaii Seeker

    White rule ends 2012. Deal with it.

  • Hawaii Seeker

    U.S., very peaceful, only the worlds foremost terrorist nation, soon to be extinct, as per scripture:

    Wail, for judgement approaches.

  • Arvind

    This study is obviously a joke. The US spends way more on military (“defense”) than the rest of the world combined, and is directly or indirectly responsible for most of the conflict in the middle east, north africa and east asia.