This is why the Dutch are the happiest residents of the world Healthy
With all the discontent it sometimes seems like it’s all doom and gloom, but the Dutch are still among the happiest people in the world. The country is ranked fifth in the World Happiness Report 2023. Finland tops the list for the sixth consecutive year.
The Netherlands ranks alongside countries like Finland, Denmark, Iceland and Israel in terms of the level of individuality within those countries. Sociologist Ruud Veenhoven says that people are simply happier in a modern and individualistic society. He may be 80 years young, but the researcher is still active in his field. He is an international celebrity in the field of happiness.
“In Scandinavia and the Netherlands, there is a sense that there is a choice. You have to choose to know who you are. That requires a certain education. In the southern part of Europe it is different. There is more emphasis on obedience than finding what you love.
Civil servants determine happiness
In Scandinavia and the Netherlands, there is a sense of choice
According to Veenhoven, this makes a difference in the ranking of the World Happiness Report, which is compiled annually by scientists from the United States. Over a three-year period, it looks at how citizens feel, their social support for each other, corruption in their government, their physical and mental health, and GDP per capita.
You wouldn’t think so, but the happiness of the average resident depends on the quality of civil servants. “In a country where civil servants are well-trained, non-corrupt and there is little difference between rules and practice, people are happy. Because in such an environment you can make your own choices.
But sometimes the news seems to be dominated by doom and gloom, and we only hear the small things around us. How can the Dutch be so happy? Veenhoven says it’s precisely because of the grunt. While there are a lot of complaints, a lot can be improved. “Many journalists see abuses as an invitation to bring them to light. As a result, many issues are placed on the political agenda. Another phenomenon: when people think it’s all doom and gloom, they often think their own lives aren’t so bad. ‘Then I must be happier than the average Dutchman,’ is the thought.
We can get more points in Govt quality says Prof. Joy. According to him, this is the best predictor of a good score. Dissatisfaction with matters such as the surcharge issue and gas extraction in Groningen has complicated the sense of happiness. “There needs to be improvement, but everyone agrees on that.”
Why Israel ranks fourth is a mystery to Veenhoven. The “biggest protests in the country’s history” have been going on for ten weeks. Yet the average resident pays 7.4 over their lifetime, according to a US report. Just like the average Dutchman. “It’s a very private country, but I’m surprised. It scores as high as South American countries. They’re not very rich. The government is not as bad as African countries, but it has its limits. In short, fortunately there are still things to investigate. Otherwise I’d go home. Let’s go.”
Top 10 countries with the least happy people
6. Burkina Faso
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