The American Dream in digital reality: the U.S. stance in the global remote work landscape

Where tradition meets innovation, the United States carves out its unique niche in the global remote work index, standing tall at 16th place. The home of Silicon Valley pioneers and Manhattan tycoons, the U.S. pairs its dynamic infrastructure and top-tier English proficiency with a welcoming, diverse cultural landscape to offer a vibrant canvas for remote work. Discover what makes the U.S. a compelling contender in the remote work century.

USA in GRWI map


Key takeaways

  • The United States stands at 16th place in the Global Remote Work Index (GRWI).
  • It leads in categories like cyber security infrastructure, tourism appeal, and English proficiency.
  • The U.S. also excels in economic safety (2nd), internet quality (2nd), and e-governance (2nd).
  • Notable rankings include healthcare (4th), digital and physical infrastructure (6th), and internet quality (9th).
  • Among the highest English proficiency countries like the UK (19th), Australia (25th), Malta (30th), New Zealand (34th), and Jamaica (78th), the U.S. stands the highest in the overall ranking.
  • Other countries with the best English proficiency are Ireland and Canada, slightly outpacing the U.S. in the general ranking, at 9th and 14th, respectively.
Overview of countries GRWI measurement score

Cyber safety

Although the U.S. occupies the 33rd spot in cyber safety, it takes the lead in infrastructure (1st) and excels in combating cybercrime (9th). However, there is room for improvement in legal measures for cyber safety, where the U.S. is currently at the 20th spot, alongside countries like Austria, Australia, New Zealand, Argentina, Turkey, the Philippines, and Jamaica. In comparison, the U.S. outperforms other English proficiency leaders like Australia (35th) and the U.K. (36th) in this area.

Comparison with neighboring countries

The U.S. (16th) and Canada (14th), North America's close-knit neighbors, share similar GRWI scores, particularly in cyber safety (33rd and 32nd) and economic safety (2nd and 3rd). The U.S. outshines Canada in digital and physical infrastructure (6th vs 15th), mainly due to superior internet affordability (2nd vs 49th). Canada, however, trumps the U.S. in e-infrastructure (19th vs 23rd). Social inclusivity is a Canadian strength, outranking the U.S. almost three-fold (10th vs 28th). The comparison paints a picture of a socially amiable Canada and a more economically robust U.S.

Mexico, the southern neighbor, significantly trails behind the U.S. in overall GRWI rankings, standing at 62nd. Still, there are similarities in general safety (U.S. 62nd, Mexico 72nd), legal measures (20th vs 23rd), and tourism appeal (1st vs 10th).

Comparison map with neighbouring countries

Finding a non-neighboring country with similar index results

The U.S. and the UK , historic allies across the Atlantic, showcase comparable GRWI standings (16th and 19th). They share similar ratings in cyber safety (33rd vs 36th), economic safety (2nd vs 1st), and digital and physical infrastructure (6th vs 12th). They also align in social safety (37th vs 28th) and various specific categories like tourism attractiveness (1st vs 3rd), healthcare quality (4th vs 8th), cost of living (89th vs 78th), inclusivity (28th vs 24th), and general safety (62nd vs 58th). However, the U.S. leads in internet affordability and cybersecurity response , while the UK takes the crown in personal rights and physical infrastructure.

Illustration of neighbouring countries GRWI

Top remote destinations for the U.S. workers

The U.S. shines in many areas like English proficiency, economic security, and tourism, yet there are still some areas for improvement, such as living costs and social and cyber safety. This makes some individuals seek alternative remote work locations.

English proficiency-wise

Top English-proficient countries include Ireland, Canada, the U.S., the UK, Australia, Malta, New Zealand, and Jamaica, with varying overall GRWI rankings. Non-EU countries, mostly English-speaking, rank high in economic safety, demonstrating the global influence of the English language.

Considering the cost of living

If a cheaper living cost coupled with reliable and affordable internet is appealing to you, consider South-Eastern Europe. Hungary and Bulgaria might offer an optimal balance of these attributes. Alternatively, Moldova or Tunisia could offer a blend of affordable living, low internet costs, and a dash of cultural adventure.

Working remote employees illustration

In terms of cyber safety

Countries worth considering for their robust cybersecurity include Belgium, Croatia, Germany, Estonia, and Lithuania. Each offers a balance of cyber safety, English proficiency, and other factors like tourism attractiveness and legal measures.

Or is it better to stay at home?

Despite a slight dip in the rankings, the United States remains a compelling choice for future remote work, thanks to its robust infrastructure, tourism appeal, and affordable internet. Yet, there's more to it. The U.S., with its diverse cultural tapestry, varying climates, and breathtaking locales, offers a unique blend of professional opportunities and personal enrichment. So, why look further when you could strike a balance between work and exploration in your own backyard?


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