The annual Eurovision song contest concludes later tonight as all finalists prepare to take centre stage in Lisbon at 8pm UK time.
Ahead of the thrilling grand finale, a study conducted by scientists at Imperial College London, found people feel a greater satisfaction with life every time their nation’s representative jumps 10 places on the scoreboard.
The findings, published in the journal BMC Public Health, surprisingly found doing badly in Eurovision was associated with better life satisfaction as opposed to not taking part at all.
Dr Filippos Filippidis, the lead author of the research, said: “This finding emerged from a jokey conversation in our department.
“Our ‘day job’ involves investigating the effect of public policies, environmental factors and economic conditions on people’s lifestyle and health.
“Our department employs people from lots of different countries and around the time of the Eurovision Song Contest we were chatting about whether the competition could also affect a country’s national well-being.
“We looked into it and were surprised to see there may be a link.”
According to the researchers, the same forces which drive happy Eurovision audiences are felt during major events promoting national pride, such as big sports games.
Eurovision 2018 final: Good results make people more satisfied with life
The researchers looked at questionnaires from over 160,000 people from across 33 European countries.
People were asked to fill out the so-called Eurobarometer, which the European Commission conducts on numerous occasions throughout the year.
The major question posed by the survey focused on how satisfied people are with their life.
From the data, Dr Filippidis and his team calculated a four percent shift in satisfaction whenever a singer moved up the scoreboard by 10 positions.
Meanwhile taking part in the contest but finishing in the lower end of the scoreboard was associated with a 13 percent increase in overall satisfaction with life.
However, competing and claiming the Eurovision title in the final did not seem to further influence satisfaction at all.
Dr Filippidis stressed the findings offer valuable insight into national moods during such major events.
He said: “Previous work, by other teams around the world, has shown that national events may affect mood and even productivity – for instance, research suggests an increase in productivity in the winning city of the US Super Bowl.
Eurovision audiences feel intense national pride during the annual song contest
The Eurovision study was conducted at Imperial College London
“It increases the amount of good feeling around, even among people who are not particularly interested in the competition.
“I remember when Greece won in 2005 – in the weeks that followed people seemed to be in a better mood.”
The expert said the Eurovision research can be used to help influence various spheres of public life to help with wellbeing and health.
He added: “I’ve been known to occasionally watch it in previous years. It’s certainly entertaining, but I don’t take it too seriously.”
If the findings of the study are true then the people of Cyprus could be looking towards a very satisfactory evening tonight.
Singer Eleni Foureira and her upbeat anthem Fuego is at the forefront of the race but UK presentative SuRie is still fighting for a chance to win.
The latest odds from Ladbrokes suggest Cyprus is the favourite to win at 5/4, followed by Israel at 11/4 and Ireland at 6/1.
A total of 16 countries made it through to the Eurovision 2018 final tonight.