Germany Tops Nation Brands Index

January 28, 2015

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. come out on top /kʌm aʊt ɒn tɒp/ (idiom) – to be the winner or to be number one
Example: Germany came out on top in a survey about being energy efficient.

2. excellence /ˈɛk sə ləns/ (n.) – the state of being in high quality or being superior
Example: The United States is known for its business excellence.

3. reputation /ˌrɛp yəˈteɪ ʃən/ (n.) – the way people see or think about someone or something
Example: The corrupt leader has a bad reputation.

4. poll /poʊl/ (v.) – to get information by asking a number of people to answer a series of questions
Example: The researchers polled 2,000 people about their opinion on climate change.

5. competitiveness /kəmˈpetətɪvnəs/ (n.) – the quality of being better than others, as in competition
Example: Singapore tops the rank of economic competitiveness.


Read the text below.
The 2014 Anholt-GfK Roper Nation Brands Index revealed that Germany came out on top in terms of nation branding, stealing the spot from the United States.

According to the index, Germany took over the top spot after its football team won the FIFA World Cup earlier in 2014. Aside from its excellence in sports, Germany’s image has also improved because of its enhanced governance.

Nation branding is a concept that focuses on creating or identifying the public image and reputation of a country based on its investments, exports, governance, people, culture, and tourism.  In 2005, Simon Anholt, a policy advisor, used the term “Nation Branding” to determine which countries have the highest reputation.

Anholt partnered with GfK Roper, a research firm, to poll 20,000 people from 20 different countries. Aside from Germany landing on the first spot, the results have the United States and the United Kingdom on the second and third spot, respectively. Other countries included in the top 10 are France, Canada, Japan, Italy, Switzerland, Australia, and Sweden.

Because getting a higher spot in the Nation Brands Index can contribute to economic growth, some countries are making an effort to improve their public reputation. One way to improve reputation is to create branding campaigns. These campaigns are aimed at enhancing a country’s competitiveness in exporting and investments.

Some branding techniques focus on encouraging businesses to invest. Countries that use this technique create campaigns that emphasize their infrastructure and financial markets. Highlighting these aspects aims to attract and to increase the number of foreign investors coming in the country.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A 

·         If you were asked to choose, which country is number one in terms of public image and reputation? Please explain your answer.
·         How do you think your country can improve its standing in the Nation Brands Index?

Discussion B

·         Why is having a good reputation important for a country?
·         In your opinion, does your country need to improve its public image? Why or why not?

January 28, 2015