How should I say:

There are many threats faced by almost all countries IN the world


There are many threats faced by almost all countries OF the world

I used to say "IN the world". However, I have seen both of the cases on the Internet.

  • 1
    Related: “Highest building of/in the world”
    – choster
    Jan 28, 2015 at 14:48
  • Yes, already checked that question.
    – Konstantin
    Jan 28, 2015 at 14:50
  • 2
    To use "of" would have a slightly more literary feel to it. Usually one would say "in" there.
    – Robusto
    Jan 28, 2015 at 14:59
  • 1
    And just to be complete, if you replace world with Earth, the preposition changes to on.
    – Barmar
    Jan 28, 2015 at 16:52
  • 1
    Why is it necessary to say either? Where else are the countries going to be? Thinking about the phrase "Workers of the World, Unite!" the "of the world" emphasises across international boundaries but when talking about different countries that is already a given. Sep 11, 2016 at 15:01

2 Answers 2


In general, of is the more used collocation in the construction all countries of/in the world. Have a look at this ngram. This might be based in the fact that of the world regardless of what it follows is already more idiomatic as in the world. (Ngram)

It seems however, that the usage of in gains favor if whatever is referred is more tangible. In this ngram country and nation in singular usage, places an people are used with in while more abstract concepts like part(s), rest, end, knowledge, history and creation are using of.


When the sentence starts with "There is/are", my preference is "in the world". Otherwise, "of the world" will be my choice.

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