The 5 Best Countries to Be a Teen (Guess How the U.S. Ranks?)

Ever wondered how what it’s like to be a teen in the U.S. differs from how it is in, say, Nigeria? Thanks to the recently released Global Youth Wellbeing Index, we’ve now got a pretty good read on which countries are better for teens than others.

The Center for Strategic and International Studies and the International Youth Foundation teamed up to create the index, which ranked 30 countries across the globe based six factors: Citizen participation, economic opportunity, education, health, information and communications technology (ICT), and safety and security. Guess where the U.S. falls in the top five rankings?

Surprise! It doesn’t. At all. It came in sixth, with Australia, Sweden, South Korea, the United Kingdom, and Germany taking the top five spots. Aussie teens have it made, with high scores across the board in all categories:

The U.S., in contrast, may have top scores for economic opportunity, education, and ICT, but plummets in the rankings when it comes to citizen participation (by which we mean things like youths’ perception of value in society and the existence of youth policy):

Apparently the kids are not all right.

But in all seriousness, though, U.S. teens still have it really, really good, comparatively speaking. The bottom four countries are all African, with rankings like 27 for economic opportunity (Nigeria), 27 for health (Kenya), 29 for education (Tanzania), and 28 for safety and security (Uganda). We’ve still got a long way to go towards providing better opportunities for teens worldwide.

Check out the full listing here.

Image: Fotolia