Young mother with her child at a park in Prague, Czech Republic

Czech Republic ranked world’s 12th-best country to achieve the American Dream; USA 88th

One in six Czech children born to parents in the lower half of the country’s educational attainment distribution end up in the upper quarter
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One of the key tenets of “The American Dream” is that anyone, regardless of their background, can achieve great success if they put in enough effort. But is that really true?

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In the United States, perhaps not so much. You might be better off chasing the American Dream in a number of other countries – – including the Czech Republic – – according to a 2018 report from the World Bank that was recently extrapolated upon by Business Insider.

The report, entitled Fair Progress? Economic Mobility across Generations Around the World, did indeed show that those in poorer regions had, on average, less opportunity for upward mobility. But it was not a guarantee that the wealthier a country, the greater the chance for moving up in the world.

Numerous metrics in the study compared the educational and economic opportunities of children to those of their parents. One of the key measurements in the study was educational attainment, and how much advancement children born into families with low educational opportunity had within a generation. The study based its findings on children born in the 1980s.

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In the US, for example, 12.5% of children born to parents in the lower half of the educational attainment distribution ended up in the top quarter. That’s good for 88th among the 135 countries surveyed.

In the Czech Republic, meanwhile, 16.7% of children born into the lower half of the educational attainment distribution wound up in the top quarter.

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That percentage was good enough for Business Insider to tap the Czech Republic as one of ‘31 countries where the ‘American Dream’ is more attainable than in the US’, placing Czechia at #12 on their list.

The country with the greatest chance of achieving the American Dream? Cyprus, where 22.8% of children born to parents in the lower half wound up in the top quarter. Denmark, Slovenia, the UK and Sweden also made the top 5.

These are Business Insider’s 31 countries where the ‘American Dream’ is more attainable than in the US:

31. Ireland – 12.9%
30. Italy – 13.0%
29. Hungary – 13.3%
28. Latvia – 13.3%
27. Croatia – 13.9%
26. France – 14.9%
25. Switzerland – 14.9%
24. Spain – 15.0%
23. Poland – 15.0%
22. Austria – 15.1%
21. Belgium – 15.3%
20. Finland – 15.6%
19. Lithuania – 15.7%
18. Slovakia – 15.7%
17. Norway – 15.9%
16. Australia – 16.1%
15. Portugal – 16.3%
14. Canada – 16.3%
13. Taiwan – 16.3%
12. Czech Republic – 16.7%
11. Israel – 16.8%
10. South Korea – 17.0%
9. Netherlands – 17.1%
8. Germany – 17.1%
7. Estonia – 17.6%
6. Japan – 18.1%
5. Sweden – 18.5%
4. UK – 18.6%
3. Slovenia – 19.2%
2. Denmark – 21.1%
1. Cyprus – 22.8%

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