Prague has best quality of life in the Czech Republic

Study shows that the country overall lags behind Northern Europe

The highest quality of life in the Czech Republic is in Prague and the lowest is in the Northwest including the Ústí nad Labem and Karlovy Vary regions, according to a report by non-profit organization Social Progress Imperative and consultancy Deloitte.

Compared to the rest of Europe, the regions in the Czech Republic are in the lower middle.

The European Union Regional Social Progress Index measures social progress on 50 indicators across the 272 regions of the 28 European Union member states to help inform development strategies. The index uses three broad categories: basic human needs, foundations of well-being and opportunity.

Prague came in 159th and the Southeast area came in 176th. Both Prague and the Southeast region received high marks for good opportunities in basic and higher education. The Northwest was 232nd.

“In the basic human needs dimension, Prague performs best on nutrition and basic medical care and has most opportunity to improve on the shelter component. In the foundations of well-being dimension, Prague scores highest on access to basic knowledge but lags on the environmental quality component. In the opportunity dimension, Prague is strongest on access to advanced education and has the most room to improve on personal rights,” the report stated.

The southeast region of the Czech Republic includes Brno and South Moravia as well as Vysočina. The overall assessment was virtually identical to Prague's, with the sames strengths and weaknesses.

The Northwest did poorly in opportunity, scoring 248th out of 272. “In the basic human needs dimension, the Northwest performs best on water and sanitation and has most opportunity to improve on the shelter component. In the foundations of well-being dimension, the Northwest scores highest on access to basic knowledge but lags on the environmental quality component. In the opportunity dimension, northwest is strongest on personal freedom and choice and has the most room to improve on personal rights,” the report says.

Bratislava, the capital of Slovakia came in 181st, the highest in that country. Virtually all of Germany and Austria scored higher than the Czech Republic, while Poland was mostly lower.

The highest scores in Europe were in Scandinavia and the Netherlands. The lowest scores were in Romania and Bulgaria. “The Index shows no clear distinction between old (EU-15) and new (EU-13) member states. Overall performance in new member states from Central Europe is on par with regions of old member states in Southern Europe,” the report stated.

The economy is not the only explanation for differences. “Like other social progress indexes, we find that variation in performance by region is not explained by wealth, in terms of GDP per capita, alone. Regions of similar wealth have different levels of social progress; regions of different wealth can achieve similar social progress,” the report said.

Central London, the richest region in Europe, was average in social development, ranking 81st in Europe, which was one of the lower scores in the UK.

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