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Danes, Finns and Norwegians are happier than the Dutch

Tuesday 03 April 2012

The Dutch are among the happiest people in the world, according to the latest World Happiness Report drawn up by American economists.

The research, which looks at dozens of reports, rankings and other statistical information, put the Dutch in fourth place behind the Danes, Finns and Norwegians.

The aim of the report is to help develop a 'new type of policy-making aimed at increasing happiness and reducing misery,' says one of its authors, Jeffrey Sachs.

'The bulk of public expenditure is on health, social care, law and order, the environment, child welfare, and income support,' he says. 'In none of these cases does willingness to pay provide adequate guidance to the benefits that arise. Happiness would be an excellent added criterion for evaluating these expenditures.'

In particular, the Netherlands and Denmark have a 'high degree of equality' in the distribution of happiness, the report says.

© DutchNews.nl


Readers' Comments

Strange, I was brought up to believe that when you are happy you are smiling.

By jaycee | 3 April 2012 9:42 AM

Pretty sweet news for NL and the Dutch, its certainly not all weirdness here ;)
Well done and congrats to all the cool smart socially minded Dutch folks out there!

By Bill | 3 April 2012 2:04 PM

All you tall beautiful happy people...are so lucky.

By Russ | 3 April 2012 8:39 PM

Bill, who are you talking about exactly? :))

By Idioteque | 3 April 2012 9:13 PM

I have to agree with both Jaycee and Idioteque. I get people saying 'hi' to me all the time but they NEVER smile at me. I'd rather get a smile than a 'hi' - a smile means a lot more and shows a lot more. Saying 'hi' is like they're almost on automatic mode.

By Mandela | 4 April 2012 8:01 AM

Idioteque: just trying to stay positive and say something encouraging and kind and social to the Dutch. This keeps me happy and healthy, plus I try and provide an example for them to follow :)

By Bill | 4 April 2012 9:27 AM

What's up with all that "you are happy" propaganda lately! They can keep saying it, but just walk down any street and count how many of the first 10 people you meet actually look happy.

By AnotherExpat | 4 April 2012 10:45 AM

@jaycee anbd Mandela: you are culturally biased. the smile is something very important in certain cultures (e.g. Us, South Africa etc.) but not a universal indication of happiness.

By leon | 4 April 2012 10:51 AM

Do they take into account suicide rate when doing the “happiness analyses”? All these tall, blond, fit, healthy, well-educated and polyglot people should not be jumping in front of trains….

By Sambatullips | 4 April 2012 10:58 AM

I agree Mandela. And when I smile at THEM, I'm looked at as if I'm a crazy person. I rarely EVER get a smile back but more of a "WTF?" smirk.

By Stupid | 4 April 2012 12:47 PM

@ Leon - I'm not saying that they have to go around like the Joker or a constipated monkey but they don't have to look at me like they want to slap me either, which they do most of the time.

By Mandela | 5 April 2012 8:39 AM

Watch happiness plunge and welfare collapse if the borders remain open and the EU's power expands.

@Bill- usually you are anti Dutch and anti establishment?

By Phil | 5 April 2012 11:55 AM

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