Canada Ranks 15th on Social Progress Index 2024

Canada Ranks 15th on Social Progress Index 2024 Rankings-01

This year’s version of the Social Progress Index (SPI) is out, and to no surprise, Canada has once again received top marks! Placing 15th out of 170, Canada dropped from 10th in the SPI 2022 edition but still remains ahead of many of its Western counterparts such as France, Spain, and the United States.

The SPI is one of the world’s largest curations of social and environmental data, a comprehensive measurement that aims to evaluate countries’ performance in these categories. It goes beyond using gross domestic product (GDP) to measure a country's progress and provides a more complete picture of human, societal, and environmental needs. The SPI 2024 utilizes 12 categories and 60 sub-indicators to assess the social performance of 170 countries. By focusing on aspects such as basic human needs, foundational well-being, and overall opportunity, the SPI accurately represents a nation's overall development and support for its citizens.

In other words, the SPI and other indices like it are excellent indicators of which countries are the best sources of supply for our natural resources such as energy, food, lumber, and minerals.

Canadians should be proud of our global leadership on the SPI. Our nation’s overall wealth and prosperity – underpinned largely by the natural resources sector – enables us to have quality education, healthcare, infrastructure, and other critical social programs, all of which support our advancement in social and environmental initiatives like those measured by the SPI.

Social Progress Index 2024 – Top 20 Countries

  1. Denmark
  2. Norway
  3. Finland
  4. Iceland
  5. Sweden
  6. Switzerland
  7. Luxembourg
  8. Australia
  9. Netherlands
  10. Germany
  11. Austria
  12. Ireland
  13. Belgium
  14. New Zealand
  15. Canada
  16. Japan
  17. Republic of Korea
  18. Estonia
  19. Czechia
  20. Slovenia

How the Social Progress Index Works

SPI 2024 - ranking indicators

The SPI closely measures the extent to which countries provide for their citizens' social and environmental needs using an extensive collection of related data. Each country is ranked based on its social progress and uses a comprehensive framework, incorporating 60 social and environmental outcome indicators across 12 components (see above).

The index’s methodology involves analyzing data from various sources, such as the United Nations, the World Bank, and the World Health Organization. The data is grouped into three main categories:

Basic Needs

  • Nutrition and medical care
  • Water and sanitation
  • Housing
  • Safety

Foundations of Well-Being

  • Basic education
  • Information and communication
  • Health
  • Environmental quality


  • Rights and voice
  • Freedom and choice
  • Inclusive society
  • Advanced education

Canada - SPI 2024 Scorecards

Canada's SPI 2024 Scores (above)

Within each sub-category listed above, four to six indicators provide a detailed assessment of societal progress. The scores for each indicator are aggregated into a final SPI score out of 100 for every country, providing each with an overall global ranking.

By providing a comprehensive framework for measuring social progress, the SPI helps policymakers, civil society organizations, and businesses understand the needs and priorities of the countries they serve.

Social Progress & Natural Resources

Canada’s natural resource sectors employ millions of people across the country. These are well-paying, long-term careers that support countless families while helping Canadians sustain one of the highest quality-of-life rankings in the world.

Government revenues generated by the natural resource industries – forestry, mining, energy, agriculture – are used to supplement our nation’s public healthcare, infrastructure and educational systems (to name a few examples), which underpin our high ranking on the Social Progress Index and other ESG-related indexes.

For example, between 2000 and 2032, the oil and gas industry is expected to generate over $1.1 trillion in revenues for Canadian governments – an extraordinary amount of cash that could pay for 550 new hospitals like the proposed acute care hospital in Windsor-Essex, at $2 billion each.

A recent report by the Mining Association of British Columbia (MABC) found that if the province were to develop 16 critical mineral mines, it could generate over 2.1 million person-hours of employment, $183 billion in worker income, $154 billion in tax revenues, and over $791 billion in economic activity.

It is evidently clear that natural resources are Canada’s economic bread and butter. And, with our country’s leading role on social and environmental indicators, it is clear that Canadian natural resources are the best choice for the world.

Why Social & Environmental Progress Matters

Social Progress Rankings - Top 15 Oil Reserve Holders

The SPI and other similar indices clearly point towards the best sources of supply for our everyday resources whether it be energy, food, lumber, minerals, metals, etc. For example, the 2024 SPI’s rankings for the world’s top oil and gas exporters (in no particular order) are as follows:

  • Norway – 2nd
  • Canada – 15th
  • United States – 29th
  • Kuwait – 48th
  • United Arab Emirates – 51st
  • Kazakhstan – 63rd
  • Qatar – 65th
  • Brazil – 67th
  • Oman – 68th
  • Mexico – 69th
  • Russia – 76th
  • Saudi Arabia – 90th
  • Algeria – 97th
  • Iraq – 113th
  • Libya – 119th
  • Nigeria – 142nd

Given the rankings for the world’s top 15 oil exporters above, which country would you choose to buy your oil from? Nations with a higher SPI ranking are clearly a better choice, as they nurture a better standard of living and quality of life for their citizens and have much more stringent protections for human rights and the environment.

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