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For the seventh year in a row, Finland has been named the happiest country in the world, according to the World Happiness Report, which was established in 2012 by the United Nations to promote sustainable development goals. The survey conducted by the report had participants rate their lives on a scale of one to ten and Finland scored a 7.7, securing its top spot. Scandinavian countries dominated the list while the United States and Germany fell out of the top 20. Afghanistan ranked lowest with a score of 1.7 due to war and conflict.

The Finnish ambassador to Germany, Kai Sauer, attributes his country’s happiness to various factors such as gender equality, trust in national institutions and citizens, low corruption, an excellent education system that ranks among the top globally, universal healthcare and their sauna culture. Finland is home to approximately 3.5 million saunas which translates to one sauna for every two residents. Saunas are integral parts of Finnish culture and can be found in all government buildings.

An exhibition in Berlin sponsored by the Finnish embassy titled “Die Sauna: Echt heiss – Echt finnisch” celebrates this cultural tradition with photos, videos and even an actual sauna available for visitors to experience. The exhibition has been a major success with all remaining sessions fully booked. Finland’s unique blend of societal factors such as gender equality measures like granting women full right to vote in parliamentary elections in 1906

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