LOS ANGELES — – Leave it to the country that brought us Ikea to make the most of the Internet.
According to a new report from the World Wide Web Foundation, the people and government of Sweden are the best in the world at optimizing the Web.
The United States ranked second in the index, followed by the United Kingdom, Canada and Finland.
Tunisia and Russia were in the middle of the list that ranks 61 countries, taking the 30 and 31st spots respectively. At the bottom of the list were Zimbabwe and Yemen.
The Web Index is the first to compare Internet usage, access and impact across 61 countries.
The results of the extensive report were released online Wednesday.
Among the findings: the United States’ score suffered because it has a lower number of households per capita that have a personal computer than many countries, including Canada, Japan, Ireland and Norway (all far smaller in population).
On the flip side, the report found that the U.S. government does a comparatively good job of disseminating information through the Web and there is lots of Web content for Americans to use.
The World Wide Web Foundation was founded by Sir Tim Berners-Lee, who invented the World Wide Web in 1989. He began the foundation in 2009 to make the Web more available and usable to more people in the world.
60% of world not online
As of now, the foundation reports, 60 percent of the world’s population does not have access to the Web.
“The Web Index was created to measure the state of the Web in the world,” Berners-Lee said in a statement. “Each country will see not only where they rank compared to others, but also what the World Wide Web Foundation thinks they need to do to improve.”
The research was supported by a $1 million grant from Google, and the researchers relied on data collected by organizations including Reporters Without Borders, the Wikimedia Foundation, the World Bank and the World Economic Forum, among others. The World Wide Web Foundation conducted its own research as well.
The foundation hopes to include 100 countries in its next report.