The word “happiness” has many different meanings. In the broadest sense it denotes the quality of life as a whole and in the most limited sense it refers to a moment of bliss. This 'Handbook of Happiness” is about happiness in a broad sense and could as well have been entitled “Handbook of Quality of Life” or “Handbook of Well-being.” Given the breadth of the topic, it is useful to start this section with an inspection of the more specific meanings of the word happiness and explain which of these meanings are used in the following chapters

Sociale verandering, sociale processen en sociale conflicten, Sociologie, Sociology
World Database of Happiness
Accepted Manuscript of Chapter 12 in: David, S.A., Boniwell, I & Ayers, A.C., (Eds.),The Oxford Handbook of Happiness, Oxford University Press, Oxford (2013), pp 161-173
Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences

Veenhoven, R. (2013). Notions of the good life. In World Database of Happiness. Retrieved from