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Vienna is No. 1

The U.S. may still have some of the world’s best universities and most innovative companies, but it does not rank highly in quality of life, according to a survey published Nov. 29 by human resource consultancy Mercer. In fact, not one U.S. city made the top 20 (of 221 total) on this year’s list. Austrian capital Vienna ranked No. 1 in the Mercer 2011 Quality of Living Survey, followed by Zurich, Switzerland; Auckland, New Zealand; and Munich, Germany. Tied for fifth place were Düsseldorf, Germany, and Vancouver, Canada. The highest-ranked U.S. city, Honolulu, placed No. 29, and San Francisco came in at No. 30. New York City ranked No. 47, behind Boston (No. 36), and Chicago and Washington, D.C. (tied for No. 43). Mercer’s survey evaluated cities’ quality of life based on their political and social environments, economic environment, sociocultural environment, health and sanitation, schools and education, public services, transportation, recreation, availability of consumer goods, housing, and natural environment.

Click here to see the world’s top 20 cities for best quality of life.

Photography by: Henryk T. Kaiser/Getty Images

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