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Kuala Lumpur among the worst for Work-Life balance with overworked citizens

Kuala Lumpur among the worst for Work-Life balance with overworked citizens

According to a recent study carried out by Kisi, Kuala Lumpur ranks 4th as the worst for Work-Life balance among the 50 major cities in the world. The study was carried out on the 4 following areas and they are work intensity, livability, and the well-being and rights of inhabitants.

Source: PRI.org

Work intensity

The study reveals that Malaysians in Kuala Lumpur spend on average 52 hours a week on commuting to work and work itself. This is way above the 40 hours standard adopted by countries worldwide. Furthermore, Malaysians in Kuala Lumpur are offered a minimum annual leave of only 8 days per annum, as compared to most major cities which offered 10 to 20 days. It is estimated that 21% of the population is overworked.

Source: Kisi


Kuala Lumpur had the worst outdoor spaces and as a citizen in Kuala Lumpur, you’ll notice that we do not have much place for recreation activities and most places had been developed into concrete jungles. Kuala Lumpur did pretty badly in air quality, city safety and affordability too. Overall, these factors contribute to making Kuala Lumpur the saddest city among the 50 cities.


Well-being of the citizens is measured by the physical fitness and health as represented by a population’s average life expectancy. It takes factors like level of inactivity, obesity and number of fitness studios into consideration too. Kuala Lumpur ranked 28 among the 50 cities in the study, which shows the citizens of Kuala Lumpur is doing pretty well in maintaining our health.

Other factor: Social and Institutions

There matrix and score for this factor is Social Spending (15.9), Healthcare (47.1), Access to Mental Healthcare (15.9), and Inclusivity & Tolerance (25). Kuala Lumpur had the worst score among all cities and these scores are based on 100 as the maximum score. As a Malaysian, do you agree that we often ignore mental health? Often we’ll label those who got into depression as weak. Here’s a guide on how you can give them a lift to make them feel better.

Other factor: COVID-19

Being the most concerned news for year 2020, measuring the COVID-19 impact on the society can give good insight of how we are doing. Overall, Kuala Lumpur is doing pretty good and is ranked 13th in having the least COVID-19 impact on the society and rank 5th in having a low unemployment rate.

As compared to the study carried out last year, Kuala Lumpur did improve from the worst to 47th. Refer here for the full report released by Kisi.

All that said, being a citizen of Kuala Lumpur, do you agree on the scores in the study?

Leave a comment below and share your thoughts on how can we improve this!

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