A Danish city has come out on top for the world’s safest city, based on a study by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).
Every second year since 2015, the EIU has released a Safe Cities Index that calculates the world’s safest city based on five pillars of urban security.
Those are digital, health, infrastructure, personal, and environmental safety.
This year, Copenhagen took the top spot away from the usual frontrunners like Tokyo, Singapore, and Osaka, which were ranked first, second, and third respectively in 2019.
The Danish capital scored 82,4 points out of 100 on the index, per CNBC.
Tokyo and Singapore still cracked the top five, but it was Toronto that grabbed second.
The top 10 safest cities are as follows:
This year, the index ranked 60 cities across 76 indicators of security, all to get a more thorough picture of global urban safety.
COVID-19, as it does, changed everything, particularly how urban safety is conceptualised.
That’s because the pandemic had an impact across all the index’s security metrics.
The new environmental security pillar was added to reflect the increased importance of sustainability issues and climate adaptation measures.
This was a big factor in how Copenhagen and Toronto rose to the top, as they have orientated towards sustainability more so than the former frontrunners.
Per Business Insider, Copenhagen ranked sixth in the environmental category, while Toronto came in second, Tokyo ranked 13th, and Singapore ranked 37th.
Additionally, the pandemic encouraged more thought to be put towards digital security, as more jobs and industries moved online.
Infrastructure safety also had to adjust because transport and utility habits changed.
In many cities, personal safety was also impacted as the pandemic caused shifts in crime trends during lockdowns.
The bottom five cities measured were Nigeria’s Lagos, Egypt’s Cairo, Venezuela’s Caracas, Pakistan’s Karachi, and Myanmar’s Yangon.
The EIU did note that there is a strong correlation between income and urban safety performance, with the top 29 cities belonging to high-income countries.
The organisation stresses that lower-income countries need to “prioritise investments in infrastructure” much more in the coming years.
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