Ranked: The world's top 10 cities for quality of living 2019

Looking for a new city to call home? Mercer's new report reveals the ideal locations

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If you asked someone which city in the world they would most like to live and work in, there's a high chance you'd get the likes of New York, Paris or Tokyo as responses.

Such cities might be familiar from their place in popular culture, and subsequently be full of excitement, but are they actually the best places for quality of living?

The answer, according to Mercer's new Quality of Living study, is a firm no.

Some cities are ideal for a week's holiday, but actually inhabiting it can be a completely different matter.

How are the cities ranked?

The global consultancy's study analysed 39 factors and placed them in the following 10 categories to produce the rankings: political and social environment, economic environment, sociocultural environment, medical and health considerations, schools and education, public services and transportation, recreation, consumer goods, housing, and natural environment.

Mercer says the study is used by multinational companies and other organisations to compensate employees fairly when they are being posted overseas.

“Strong, on-the-ground capabilities are integral to the global operations of most international businesses and are in large part driven by the personal and professional well-being of the individuals that companies place in those locations,” said Ilya Bonic, senior partner and president of Mercer’s Career business.

Ok, so where should we all aspire to live and work?

Western Europe is the place to be. Vienna has topped the rankings for the 10th year in a row, followed by Zurich in second place. Thirteen of the top 20 cities in the rankings are European, though Paris came in 39th place and London 41st.

Mercer also conducted a safest city survey and Europe dominated that too, with Luxembourg first, followed by Basel, Bern, Helsinki and Zurich in joint second.

Meanwhile, for those with a taste for the Big Apple, New York rose one place to 44th in the quality of living rankings after a fall in its crime rate, while Washington DC was 53rd.

How did the Middle East fare?

Dubai came in 74th position, so retaining its position as the region's leader for the seventh year in a row. Abu Dhabi took 78th place out of the 231 cities studied. Muscat was 105th and Amman 120th.

You can read more on Dubai and Abu Dhabi's ranking here.