Dublin is 18th safest city

Dublin has been deemed to be the 18th safest city in the world, despite growing complaints about violence on its streets

Dublin has been deemed to be the 18th safest city in the world, despite growing complaints about violence on its streets. The city was ranked 23rd for its "quality of life" in a survey of cities in 215 countries.

Luxembourg was named as the safest city in the world in the analysis by Mercer Human Resource Consulting.

The survey regarded Dublin as having a better personal safety record than cities such as London, New York, Brussels and Amsterdam.

European cities with poor rankings included Rome (99th) and Athens (93rd). The world's least safe city was Bangui in the Central African Republic. The region has been volatile since a coup in 2001.


Crime levels were a key factor in determining the rankings, so the under-reporting of crime in this State may partly explain Dublin's good safety record. Of the 4,861 people who contacted Victim Support for help last year, some 1,331 said they had not reported the crime to gardaí. Many of these involved assaults on young men.

The statistics were gathered as part of Mercer HRC's annual "quality of life" survey.

The data is used by companies and governments to determine appropriate allowances for staff transferred abroad. The analysis was based on 39 criteria, including political, social, economic and environmental factors as well as public services in areas such as health, education and transport.

Dublin's estimated quality of life increased from 35th highest in the world to 23rd in the past year. Perceived improvements in the city's air pollution standards and climate partly explained the increase.

Another factor was the reassessment of Scandinavian cities due to the incidence of seasonal affective disorders. These health disorders are caused by the short daylight hours. Cities such as Stockholm and Helsinki recorded poorer quality of life standards when this factor was taken into account.

Zurich was again deemed to be the city with the world's best quality of life. It was closely followed by Vancouver, Vienna and Geneva.

As with previous years, cities in Europe, Canada, Australia and New Zealand dominated, while African countries came lowest.

The world's least appealing city was Brazzaville in the Congo. Bangui in the Central African Republic was the second least desirable city in the world, followed closely by Baghdad in Iraq and Pointe Noire in the Congo.

Ms Irene Goldrick of Mercer Human Resource Consulting said Dublin's position was "very encouraging".

Alison Healy

Alison Healy

Alison Healy is a contributor to The Irish Times