Simon Anholt has developed a way to index and rank countries based on the amount of good they do for the world per-capita. The index takes a number of factors into account in the broad categories of Science & Technology, Culture, International Peace & Security, World Order, Planet & Climate, Prosperity & Equality, and Health & Wellbeing.
Granted, the choice of factors is subjective and the results could certainly be manipulated with the addition or subtraction of other data points, but it seems fairly reasonable. If you're wondering why the US ranks so low on the list, it's mainly due to the "per-capita" stipulation, and low marks for International Peach & Security in the high number of arms exports, internationational violent conflicts, and the origination of a large number of cyber-security threats.
While I can certainly find holes in the datasets used, the overall concept is an interesting one to think about and I like the approach. After all, nobody wants to live in a country that everybody hates, and it certainly feels that way sometimes living in America. We have our flaws but I like to think that overall the people of our nation do a lot more good for the world than bad, minus that whole global warming thing that some still apparently refules to believe in. But that's a topic for another day ...
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