Japan remains the country with the world's best reputation but the global perception of the UK, the US and Australia has faltered.

Travel News - osaka
Japan came out on top in the FutureBrand Country Index 2019.

The FutureBrand Country Index, published for the first time since 2014, is a worldwide league table that measures the global perception of 75 different countries. Essentially rating a country's "brand" reputation, in the same way they would with consumer or corporate brands. A range of metrics were used to gauge global perceptions including local values, tourism potential, quality of life, environmental efforts, heritage, culture and business potential in a worldwide survey of 2500 people.

Travel News - FutureBrand Country Index
FutureBrand Country Index top 20.

Japan held on to top spot, with the report's authors celebrating Japan's "rich culture which encompasses a favourable quality of life, natural beauty, and heritage" as one of the reasons that helped it maintain its first place ranking. It was followed by Norway in second and Switzerland in third, while Sweden and Finland completed the top five.

Travel News - GettyImages-521874338 (1)
Sweden came in fourth place. Photo by Jon Hicks

In the leading countries, report authors noticed a link between the Index survey respondent’s daily choices and their perception of a country. Global trends such as "mindfulness, conscious consumerism, experience as the new currency, the growth of the gig economy and remote working" (boosted by advances in technology), are features that respondents place in high regard. Countries that were perceived as offering citizens "a richer way of life" rather than living richer ranked higher.

Travel News - sydney harbour hike
Australia dropped to 15th place. Photo bybtrenkel/Getty Images

Meanwhile, both Australia and the UK slipped seven places to 15th and 19th respectively, and the US dropped five places to 12th.

Explore related stories

PRAGUE, CZECH REPUBLIC - 14.7.2016: Photos of people relaxing on the Letna hill next to the old metronome.; Shutterstock ID 1295361436; purchase_order: 65050; job: Online Editorial; client: Prague for free; other: Tasmin Waby


12 of the best free things to do in Prague

Jul 12, 2024 • 7 min read