Why is Melbourne the World’s Most Liveable City?

Melbourne Liveable City

In 2017, Melbourne was named the most liveable city by The Economist.  This was the seventh year running!!  It was particularly noteworthy as there was an increase in global liveability for the first time in ten years.  So what does it mean to be The Most Liveable City?


There are over 30 factors considered for this prestigious recognition, across 5 broad categories:

  • safety,
  • health care,
  • educational resources,
  • infrastructure and
  • the environment.


Each of 140 major cities are ranked against these criteria and scored on a 1-100 scale.  Cities rating between 80 and 100 are considered to have few, if any, challenges to living standards.  Melbourne received an overall score of 97.5, with scores of 100 in the areas of Healthcare, Education and Infrastructure.

The low level of crime and no recent terrorism-related incidents in the city are definitely influencing factors on Melbourne’s excellent score.


As the most liveable city, Melbourne is recognised for all the key factors of all high-ranking cities, including

  • Being mid-sized
    • Covering an area of 490 km2, Melbourne is a compact size when compared to New York City at 784 km2     or London which is 1,572 km2
Melbourne Liveable City
  • Being located in a wealthier country
    • Australia is rich in natural resources, crops, livestock and exports, creating an economic structure of wealth. This wealth is distributed across a relatively small population placing it in the highest echelon of wealthy countries in the world per capita.
  • Having a relatively low population density
    • With 4.7 million people in Melbourne, it is considerably less-populated than large cities such as Tokyo with 8 million or 13.8 million in Metro Manila.
  • Having access to a range of recreational activities
    • World renowned sporting facilities, including the MCG (Cricket & AFL), Rod Laver Arena (Tennis), Flemington Racecourse (Horse Racing), AAMI Stadium (Soccer/Football, Rugby League & Rugby Union), Hisense Arena (Tennis, Cycling, Netball and Basketball) and Etihad Stadium (AFL) cater for a variety of sports activities. The arts and entertainment activities are also catered for, with large concerts also being held at the sporting venues, as well as a variety of clubs and live music venues.  Melbourne is also home to the annual Melbourne Comedy Festival.
    • Family recreational activities are well catered for also, with such venues as Melbourne Zoo and Luna Park.
    • The beaches are a drawcard as well, with St Kilda, Williamstown, Brighton, South Melbourne, Elwood, Altona Hampton and Dendy Street Beaches worthy of note.
  • Lower crime levels across the city
    • Having experienced a drop in crime rate of 6.2% in 2017, the City of Melbourne was ranked as the 5th safest city in the world.

The survey also considers traffic congestion and public transport challenges.  Melbourne has a comfortable level, when considered against megacities such as London, New York or Paris.  Its infrastructure is also not currently overburdened, allowing for ample access to all necessary and desirable community comforts and amenities.

The cost of living and personal taste for a location may offset liveability factors for some individuals, but overall, visitors and residents alike can be assured that Melbourne promises to deliver sensational opportunities in liveability.

Melbourne Liveable City
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