ABSTRACT. Predictions about level and dispersion of happiness in nations are derived from three theories of happiness: comparison-theory, folklore-theory and livability-theory. The predictions are tested on two cross national data-sets: a comparative survey among university students in 38 nations in 1985 and a collection of comparable general population surveys in 28 nations around 1980. Most predictions of comparison-theory and folklore-theory are defied by the data. The predictions of livability-theory are all confirmed.

comparison theory, cross-national, folklore theory, happiness, life satisfaction, livability theory, need theory, subjective well-being
dx.doi.org/10.1007/BF01078967, hdl.handle.net/1765/16197
Social Indicators Research: an international and interdisciplinary journal for quality-of-life measurement
[A modern reissue of the text is also included in RePub]
Department of Sociology

Veenhoven, R, & Ehrhardt, J.J. (1995). The cross-national pattern of happiness. Test of predictions implied in three theories of happiness. Social Indicators Research: an international and interdisciplinary journal for quality-of-life measurement, 34(1), 33–68. doi:10.1007/BF01078967