Global Soft Power Index
The world's most comprehensive research study on perceptions of nation brands

100 nation brands – over 75,000 people surveyed
New data comparing nation responses to COVID-19
11 metrics, 34 statements – year-on-year score changes
6 specialist audiences – from business to media
Brand Finance – Global Soft Power Index 2021 – The world's most comprehensive research study on perceptions of soft power

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Global Soft Power Index 2021

  • Germany trumps America, claiming the top spot in Brand Finance’s Global Soft Power Index 2021
  • The United States is the fastest-falling nation in the ranking, dropping from first place to sixth place
  • Hailed as a global success story in response to COVID-19, New Zealand is the fastest-improving nation in the ranking, climbing to 16th place
  • Well-governed nations climb the ranks of the top 20 - Japan is the top-performing Asian nation and second overall, just behind Germany
  • Traditional powerhouses – UK (3rd), France (7th), China (8th), Russia (13th), Italy (19th), Spain (22nd) – see mixed perceptions of pandemic responses
  • Middle Eastern nations dream big – UAE ranks highest in 17th place, as it sends a probe to Mars and receives top marks in the region for its handling of COVID-19
  • The Global Soft Power Index expanded to 100 nations in 2021, with Iceland (30th) and Luxembourg (32nd) the highest ranked new entrants

The Global Soft Power Index is the result of a ground-breaking fieldwork research, the most inclusive of its kind, with over 75,000 respondents in 100 countries. It allows us to see in aggregate how the world views the top soft power nations, but it also enables – thanks to the scale of the sample – a more granular snapshot of nation-to-nation attitudes. These findings are vital for governments seeking to better manage their nation brands and improve their soft power influence in specific countries and on specific metrics.

David Haigh Chairman and CEO, Brand Finance
Brand Finance – Global Soft Power Index 2020 – The world's most comprehensive research study on perceptions of soft power

Read last year's report

Global Soft Power Index 2020

  • Soft power superpower – USA tops the ranking despite reputation damage
  • Runner-up Germany is admired for governance and Angela Merkel’s international leadership
  • Brand Britain remains undented by Brexit, ranking as the world’s third soft power nation
  • Japan ranked first for Business and Trade, thanks to brands the world loves
  • China and Russia rank high on influence
  • Nordic countries are among the most reputable, Greta Thunberg helps earn Sweden the top spot for climate action
  • The world’s most generous nation, Canada ranks in the top 3 for more soft power disciplines than any other nation
  • Spain is the world’s friendliest nation, but lags behind on Governance
  • UAE is Middle East’s top scorer, with high familiarity following nation brand launch
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