North America is vast in area, rich in natural resources, and diverse in culture. It is divided into three of the world's largest countries: Canada, the United States, and Mexico. All former European colonies, today the three countries have democratic governments and enjoy many personal freedoms and constitutional rights. Economically interdependent, they form a major trading bloc where each relies on imports and exports from the other two. Canada ranked an impressive sixth in the world in the Social Progress Index. At 16th, the United States ranked lower than expected for a high-income country. With an economy only one-third the size of that of the United States, Mexico still ranked in the world's top 50 percent in social progress. Challenges ahead include addressing the concentration of wealth in the hands of a few, improving access to basic services in rural areas, and achieving ecosystem sustainability in the face of population growth and climate change.