Happiness, Hope, Economic Optimism

  • Hope, Happiness, Economy, 2017

Gallup International’s 41st Annual Global End of Year Survey

October – December 2017

Economically More Difficult Year to Come

Economic Pessimism Won at Last

Economic optimism has declined over the last months. The study shows that 28% of the world is now optimistic for the economic outlook in 2018, but the economic pessimism is 2 points higher. Net optimism (the shares of those saying the next year will be one of economic prosperity minus the shares of those who say the next year will be one of economic difficulties) has shown a downward trend +23 (at the end of 2015), +20 (at the end of 2016) to -2 (at the end of 2017).

Hope on the planet Earth … but Lower

A bit less than 40% of the surveyed global population feels that 2018 will be better than 2017, which is 13 points down compared to a year ago. 23% expect a worse one. 32% believe 2018 is going to be the same as 2017 and other 6% do not know.

Happiness: A Less Happy World in 2017

About two-thirds (59%) of the surveyed world claim they are happy. This is almost 10 points lower than twelve months ago. 2017 was a tough year with terrorist attacks over almost each week and it may have influenced personal lives all around the world. Nevertheless, a majority in all polled countries are happy.

Key Findings

Ijaz Gilani, Gallup Pakistan (Global Barometer project leader):

“The 55 countries show the emergence of a global society in which national borders are being overtaken by world-wide lifestyle segments. Thus, according to the survey, the attitudes of youth across the world are more similar to each other than to the older population within their own national borders. The same is true for survey findings across lifestyles characterized by Incomes and levels of Education.

Net Happiness across the 55 countries polled by survey is 15% point higher among the Young (under 34 years of age) than among the older population (above 55 years of age).

The upscale income groups across these 55 countries are 32% points happier than the bottom twenty percent groups in their societies. The college degree holders are 13% more happy than those whose education is up to primary school or those who are illiterate.

The analysis team of the global survey argues: Happiness depends less on the country in which you live and more on your Age, Income and Education profile or lifestyle.”


The Gallup International End of Year Survey (EoY) is an annual tradition initiated by and designed under the chairmanship of Dr. George Gallup in 1977. It is conducted every year since then. This year it was carried out by the Gallup International Association in partnership with WIN in 55 countries around the world.

Sample Size and Mode of Field Work

A total of 53769 persons were interviewed globally. In each country a representative sample of around 1000 men and women was interviewed either face to face (23 countries; n=24235), via telephone (13 countries; n=11656) or online (19 countries; n=17878). The field work was conducted during October 2017 – December 2017. The margin of error for the survey is between +3-5% at 95% confidence level.