chapter  15
30 Pages

Future Trends in Aging and Counseling

In the Netherlands, there is the World Database of Happiness, a comprehensive collection of data about happiness throughout the world. Eric Weiner, a National Public Radio reporter, searched the database and reported in his book The Geography of Bliss (2008) that the happiest people tend to reside in homogeneous societies (think Iceland or Switzerland), whereas the unhappiest tend to reside in former Soviet republics, ›lled with “general mistrust, nepotism, corruption, and envy”

(Hoffer, 2008). This ›nding is similar to that of the World Values Study Group (1994, cited in Diener, 2000), which found some of the highest levels of life satisfaction among people who-at least in the early 1990s-resided in Switzerland, Denmark, and Canada and some of the lowest levels of life satisfaction among those in Bulgaria, Russia, and Belarus. The inclusion of Canada, an increasingly heterogeneous society, in the World Values Study Group list of those highest in life satisfaction suggests that it is something other than social homogeneity that results in happiness.