liberal countries

Most Liberal Countries in 2023

Ever wondered where liberty reigns supreme? In our journey through the most liberal countries in the world, we take you across nations that champion personal freedoms. We dive into their progressive policies, societal values, and what sets them apart in the global arena.

By the end of this intriguing exploration, you’ll grasp why these liberal bastions offer a unique allure for those craving for freedom and openness. Join us, and discover which country might just be the beacon of liberty you’ve been seeking.

What Is Liberalism?

Embodying a readiness to embrace fresh perspectives and practices beyond established norms, liberalism stands as a counterpoint to conservatism, which upholds conventional stances on societal issues, spanning from matrimony to fiscal and foreign policies, crime, and beyond. Nations with liberal leanings lean into change, open to novel approaches across a myriad of life’s facets, including environmental strategies, matters on gender and sexuality, reshaping penal systems toward education and rehabilitation, addressing income disparity, and other pressing social issues.

To illustrate, let’s consider the topic of same-sex marriage. In a liberal landscape, the consensus would likely be that matrimony isn’t limited by gender but is a union between two people in love. Conversely, in conservative territories, the prevailing sentiment might lean towards restricting marriage to the traditional model of a man and a woman.

Most Liberal Countries in the World

20 Most Liberal Countries in the World

For its 2021 assessment of the world’s most liberal nations, Movehub deployed an array of diverse indices. This multifaceted study harvested data regarding LGBTQ+ and gender equality from sources including the LGBTQ+ Danger Index, annual evaluations by Nomadic Boys, and the 2020 Global Gender Gap Report by the World Economic Forum. Alongside this, the Environmental Performance Index (EPI) provided insights into ecological health. The study was further enriched by the Social Progress Index, which shed light on human needs, and the 2020 World Happiness Report, offering a gauge of cultural contentment.

The following table showcases the 20 most liberal countries based on Movehub’s research.


MoveHub 2022

MoveHub 2017

Politic-Ed 2020

















New Zealand



























United States








United Kingdom





























Liberalism and Liberal Countries

Norway stands as a beacon of liberal values with a strong focus on social welfare and an inclusive societal structure. Neighboring Sweden emphasizes social equity and sustainability, creating a culture where diverse voices flourish alongside green living. Meanwhile, Denmark’s liberal ethos shines through its progressive policies and prioritizing happiness, thus becoming a globally admired model. Finland expresses its liberal spirit through a robust education system and strong gender equality. Venturing towards the Arctic, Iceland pioneers in gender equality and LGBTQ+ rights, making liberalism a core part of its societal fabric.

Crossing hemispheres, New Zealand distinguishes itself through a liberal stance that champions indigenous rights and environmental consciousness. In Europe, Switzerland demonstrates its liberal disposition by valuing neutrality and direct democracy, creating room for varied perspectives. Over in North America, Canada’s multicultural inclusivity, balanced social policies, and respect for individual rights exemplify its liberalism. Back in Europe, Germany is known for its liberal ethos that comprises progressive social policies, robust environmental initiatives, and strong democratic values. Lastly, Austria, while maintaining a traditional outlook, seamlessly melds cultural heritage with liberal stances on social and environmental issues.

Policies That Liberal Countries Adopt

🌍 Environmental Sustainability: Adopts green policies, promoting a healthier planet and safeguarding future generations. 

🌈 LGBTQ+ Rights: Ensures equality and non-discrimination, creating inclusive societies where everyone can live authentically. 

🎓 Quality Education: Encourages intellectual freedom, fostering creativity, innovation, and a well-informed citizenry. 

⚖️ Gender Equality: Bridges the gender gap, promoting fairness, economic growth, and societal harmony. 

🍃 Social Welfare: Prioritizes citizens’ well-being, leading to increased happiness and reduced poverty. 🔬 Science-backed Policies: Supports evidence-based decision-making, leading to effective and efficient solutions. 

🌳 Indigenous Rights: Respect indigenous cultures and land rights, preserving biodiversity and cultural heritage. 

🌐 Multiculturalism: Embraces diversity, promoting cross-cultural understanding and global cooperation. 

🗽 Civil Liberties: Safeguards freedom of speech and assembly, fostering an open and democratic society. 

🏛️ Rule of Law: Ensures equal treatment, promoting justice, stability, and accountability.

In Conclusion

Open-mindedness can catalyze societal growth. These liberal countries, by adopting an array of progressive policies such as environmental sustainability, gender equality, and multicultural inclusivity, are creating societies where fairness, happiness, and innovation thrive. The acknowledgment of civil liberties and indigenous rights underpins their commitment to equality. 

It’s fascinating to observe how these nations have harmoniously woven their traditional values with a forward-thinking vision. As the world grows increasingly interconnected, the values propagated by these nations offer thoughtful insights for fostering global unity and prosperity. The spirit of liberalism these countries encapsulate is not merely a set of policies; it’s a path towards a more equitable and sustainable future for all.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Which are considered the most liberal countries?

Nations like Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, and New Zealand are frequently recognized as some of the most liberal countries globally, thanks to their progressive policies and high standards of living.

What does it mean to be a liberal country?

A liberal country upholds principles such as individual rights, gender equality, and freedom of expression. They typically prioritize social welfare and are open to change and progression in various societal aspects.

What are some of the most socially liberal countries?

Countries like Canada, the Netherlands, and Germany are seen as some of the most socially liberal, supporting policies like same-sex marriage and promoting environmental sustainability.

How do liberal countries stand on gender equality?

In a liberal country, gender equality is often a central tenet. Such countries strive to close the gender gap in education, employment, and political representation, among other areas.

Which are the most accepting countries internationally for immigrants?

Internationally, countries like Canada and Australia are often cited as being particularly accepting due to their multicultural societies and comprehensive immigrant integration programs.

How do the policies of the most liberal country compare to other countries?

The most liberal country generally exhibits more progressive policies in areas like civil liberties, social welfare, and environmental sustainability compared to other countries with more conservative ideologies.

Is same sex marriage accepted in every liberal country?

While same sex marriage is increasingly accepted worldwide, its legality varies. However, it's generally more accepted in liberal countries where equal rights for all citizens are prioritized.

What is the most liberal country according to the World Values Survey?

The World Values Survey, which evaluates nations based on their societal and political values, often ranks Nordic countries like Sweden and Denmark among the world's most liberal.

How often does the standing of a country change in the ranking of most liberal countries?

A country's standing can change over time, often due to shifts in policy, societal values, and leadership. Regular assessments like the World Values Survey help track these changes.

How can a country become more socially liberal?

A country can become more socially liberal by implementing progressive policies that respect individual rights, promote equality, and address social issues based on evidence and humanitarian principles.

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