Ruut has been described as "the godfather of happiness studies". He's the director of the World Database of Happiness and a founding editor of the Journal of Happiness.
Ruut Veenhoven has spent most of his lifetime studying happiness.
It all started for Ruut during his studies in sociology in the 1960s. He was not particularly happy during his adolescence, or his years in compulsory military service. When he came to university, though, he came to enjoy life very much, but he saw that several of his fellow students were not happy, which made him wonder why individual happiness can differ so much in the same favourable conditions.
Ruut is now emeritus professor of social conditions for human happiness at Erasmus University Rotterdam in The Netherlands. His research focuses on the subjective enjoyment of life and the effects of choice on happiness. Ruut is the founding director of the World Database of Happiness and a founding editor of the Journal of Happiness Studies.