Like many things, optimism about a country’s course varies widely around the world. In some countries, an overwhelming majority of citizens feel like their country is on track, and in others, an equally overwhelming majority believe the opposite.
To see this, below is a map based on data from the 2013 Pew Research Global Attitudes Project. It shows the percentage of the populations in the surveyed countries that were satisfied with their country’s direction.
The citizens of China and Malaysia appear to be very satisfied with their countries’ directions, with 85% and 83% of their respective populations answering positively.
The bottom of the list consists of countries in the troubled Southern European periphery — Spain (5% satisfied), Italy (3%), and Greece (2%). With enduring high unemployment and political turmoil, it is not surprising that huge majorities find their countries headed in the wrong direction.
The United States falls near the middle of the surveyed countries, with 31% of respondents saying they were satisfied with the country’s direction.
Here is a list of the countries, adapted from Pew Research’s summary data: