Copenhagen with a score of 82.4 out of 100 has been named the world’s safest city for the first time ever as per the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Safe Cities Index (SCI).
In 2019, Denmark’s capital was eighth on the index, largely thanks to the initiation of an environmental security section, which the city scored quite well in, along with personal security.
Lars Weiss, lord mayor of Copenhagen, “One key factor that makes Copenhagen such a safe city is its low crime rate, currently at its lowest level in more than a decade. Copenhagen is also characterized by great social cohesion and a relatively narrow wealth gap. It is a mixed city where both the cleaning assistant and the CEO meet each other at the local supermarket and have their kids in the same school. This is one of the very cornerstones of Danish culture, and it contributes greatly to the high levels of trust and safety that we benefit from,” said the report.
Canada’s capital Toronto missed out on the top spot, taking second place with 82.2 points, while Singapore was third with 80.7 points.
Sydney followed in fourth place with 80.1 points, the Australian city topped the digital security category, while 2019 winner Tokyo got 80.0 points, putting the Japanese city in fifth place.
It isn’t shocking to see that Covid-19 is constantly mentioned throughout, particularly in the assessments on health security, which Copenhagen scored much lower in than other categories.
As per Nima Asgari, director of the Asia Pacific Observatory on Health Systems and Policies, the subject of urban resilience has previously been focused on disasters and floods rather than health crises, “probably because people never thought the health system would collapse as a consequence of continuous demand from outbreaks.”
The report proposes the idea that the missing link may have led to some destinations being less prepared, and ultimately less successful in limiting the impact of coronavirus.
Michele Acuto, a professor of global urban politics at the University of Melbourne said, “Covid-19 teaches that there is always a blind spot, even when there is a lot of activity.”
It also emphasizes that the understanding of health security “needs to be revisited” as a direct result of coronavirus.
Six cities, Amsterdam, Melbourne, Tokyo, Toronto, Singapore, and Sydney have all been in the top 10 list every year since the report was launched back in 2015, while Copenhagen has been a regular on the list since 2019.