The European Cyclists’ Federation (ECF) has published its second Cycling Barometer this May. The groundbreaking new benchmark report was launched for the first time in 2013 and it provided a multi-dimensional view on cycling in all 27 EU countries.

Comparing European countries and the state of their cycling across numerous fields is a tricky task, even within the European Union. Different national statistics and lack of data collection make it hard to be certain about the cycling record of each country.

In light of this, the ECF Cycling Barometer has taken five verifiable EU-wide surveys and therefore eliminated different treatments given to cycling in EU member states. The countries are then given points according to their rank in each field and all points are summed to get a final score.

After two years, ECF has decided to take a look at how things have changed since 2013 and what could be seen from the new data available, with Croatia – the newest member of the EU – included as well.

“The ECF Barometer was built as a talking point to raise awareness on the need to get good cycling data. It was a big success last time so we hope to see the discussion continue again this year” says Chloé Mispelon, ECF project leader for the barometer.

The results

Like in 2013, Denmark and the Netherlands once again come out on top, with the same four countries following close behind: Sweden, Finland, Germany, and Belgium. Slovenia jumped the most ranks to 7th place, surpassing countries like the UK and France.

Luxembourg also leapt forward, most likely due to a good cycling fatalities record and great cycling advocate numbers/population. Spain jumped forward mainly due to improvement in all five criteria. Some countries have more or less maintained their relative positions – like Hungary, Austria, Slovakia, and the Czech Republic – and similarly to 2013 countries in the South and East of Europe still show a lot of room for improvement.

One disappointment in this year’s barometer is the bad score for Ireland, despite great cycling developments in Dublin, as they went down in ranking due to the cycling use criteria.

Rank Country
1 Denmark
2 Netherlands
3 Sweden
4 Finland
5 Germany
6 Belgium
7 Slovenia
8 Hungary
9 Austria
10 = Slovakia
10 = UK
12 France
13 Luxembourg
14 Czech Republic
15 Lithuania
16 Croatia
17 Italy
18 Spain
19 Estonia
20 Poland
21 = Bulgaria
21 = Ireland
23 Latvia
24 = Greece
24 = Malta
26 Cyprus
27 Portugal
28 Romania

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