Journal of Happiness Studies

Publisher: Springer Verlag

Journal description

The Journal of Happiness Studies is a peer reviewed scientific journal devoted to subjective well-being. It covers both cognitive evaluations of life (like life-satisfaction) and affective enjoyment of life (such as mood level). Next to contributions on appraisal of life-as-a-whole the journal accepts contributions on life domains (such as job-satisfaction) and life-aspects (such as perceived meaning of life). The Journal of Happiness Studies provides a forum for two main traditions in happiness research: 1) speculative reflection on the good life and 2) empirical investigation of subjective well-being. Contributions from all sciences are welcomed: alpha-sciences (in particular philosophy) beta-sciences (especially health related quality-of-life research) and gamma-sciences (not only psychology and sociology but also economy). Leading questions concern the conceptualization measurement prevalence explanation evaluation imagination and study of happiness. Leading Questions: Conceptualisation : What meanings are denoted by terms like happiness and subjective well being How do these fit in with broader conceptions of the good life Measurement : In what ways can we assess how people feel about life What are the best measures for what purposes Can scores be compared between individuals and across time and culture Prevalence : How do people feel about life Are there systematic differences across social categories culture and time Explanation : What goes on in people when they appraise their life Which mental and neural processes are involved What conditions foster a positive appreciation of life How are these effects mediated Why do we feel good or bad What is the use of going through life-appraisals Evaluation : What are the consequences of enjoyng life or not Is happiness a worthwhile goal for therapy and social policy Imagination : How is happiness portrayed in arts and fiction What does the public think of it Do beliefs fit reality How do policy makers think of happiness Do their beliefs matter Does imagination affect appraisals of life Study : How has the study of happiness developed Can we link philosophical thought and empirical research

Current impact factor: 1.88

Impact Factor Rankings

Additional details

5-year impact 0.00
Cited half-life 5.50
Immediacy index 0.29
Eigenfactor 0.00
Article influence 0.00
Website Journal of Happiness Studies website
Other titles Journal of happiness studies (Online)
ISSN 1389-4978
OCLC 44554714
Material type Document, Periodical, Internet resource
Document type Internet Resource, Computer File, Journal / Magazine / Newspaper

Publisher details

Springer Verlag

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    • Author's post-print on any open access repository after 12 months after publication
    • Publisher's version/PDF cannot be used
    • Published source must be acknowledged
    • Must link to publisher version
    • Set phrase to accompany link to published version (see policy)
    • Articles in some journals can be made Open Access on payment of additional charge
  • Classification
    ​ green

Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The current study examines the relationships of students’ grades and goal achievement to changes in three personal resources (hope, self-efficacy and optimism), before and following participation in a focused hope intervention. According to Hobfoll’s (Am Psychol 44:513–524, 1989) conservation of resources paradigm, people attempt to amass and protect personal resources (i.e., aspects of the self linked to resiliency), and existing resources can be mobilized in pursuit of further resources and achievements. The goal of the study was to identify individual differences related to changes in these resources and their relationships with academic achievement over time. Based on Snyder’s (The psychology of hope. Free Press, New York, 1994) Hope Theory, and augmented by concepts drawn from self-efficacy and optimism theories, 83 first-year college students participated in a focused hope intervention workshop. The results highlight individual differences in hope levels. Particularly, we found an interaction of time and hope levels on academic achievement. Students who achieved higher levels of hope following the workshop attained higher grades in the semester following the intervention, even though mean grades were not statistically different before the intervention. Optimism and self-efficacy scores both increased immediately following the workshop, but displayed different trajectories at follow-up. Hope manifested more consistent relationships than optimism or self-efficacy with grades over time. The implications of these changes for future research as well as for intervention in educational systems are discussed.
    Journal of Happiness Studies 06/2015; 16(3). DOI:10.1007/s10902-014-9508-5
  • Journal of Happiness Studies 05/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10902-015-9641-9
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    ABSTRACT: Understanding subjective wellbeing (SWB) at the population level has major implications for governments and policy makers concerned with enhancing the life quality of citizens. The Personal Wellbeing Index (PWI) is a measure of SWB with theoretical and empirical credentials. Homeostasis theory offers an explanation for the nature of SWB data, including the distribution of scores, maintenance and change over time. According to this theory, under normal conditions, the dominant constituent of SWB is Homeostatically Protected Mood (HPMood), which is held within a genetically determined range of values around a set-point. However, in extreme circumstances (e.g., financial hardship, chronic illness), HPMood may dissociate from SWB, as cognitive/emotional reactions to the cause of homeostatic challenge assume control over SWB. This study investigates two groups as people scoring in the positive range for SWB and people who are likely to be experiencing homeostatic defeat/challenge. We test whether the reduced influence of HPMood on SWB due to homeostatic defeat has implications for the validity of SWB measurement. Participants were 45,192 adults (52 % female), with a mean age of 48.88 years (SD = 17.35 years), who participated in the first 23 surveys of the Australian Unity Wellbeing Index over the years 2001–2010. Multiple regression analysis, multiple group confirmatory factor analysis, and Rasch modelling techniques were used to evaluate the psychometric performance of the PWI across the two groups. Results show that while the PWI functioned as intended for the normal group, SWB in the challenged group was lower across all PWI domains, more variable, and the domain scores lacked the strength of intercorrelation observed in the normal, comparison group. These changes are consistent with predictions based on homeostasis theory and one major implication of the findings is that SWB measures may not function equivalently across the entire spectrum of possible domain satisfaction scores.
    Journal of Happiness Studies 01/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10902-015-9613-0
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    ABSTRACT: While a growing body of literature supports the role of mutual help organizations in helping members achieve abstinence, fellowships other than Alcoholics Anonymous and outcomes beyond abstinence have been studied far less often. The current study examined recovery-related correlates of psychological well-being in a sample of Narcotics Anonymous (NA) members. Participants (N = 128) were self-identified NA members from across the United States who completed an online survey assessing an array of psychosocial outcomes. Hierarchical regression models assessed whether abstinence duration and other recovery-related variables accounted for significant incremental variance in psychological well-being, over and above several covariates. As a block, abstinence duration and the recovery predictors accounted for significant incremental variance in three of four psychological well-being domains. As a complement to studies on short-term benefits of mutual help organizations, these data suggest ongoing recovery involvement may be positively associated with subjective psychological well-being in NA members.
    Journal of Happiness Studies 01/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10902-014-9609-1
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    ABSTRACT: We applied the linguistic approach and a longitudinal design to investigate how dual-earner couples address work-family stress and how they reasoned with communal coping to reduce work-family stress. Although previous research indicated that we-talk may be a marker for communal coping, we argued that gender may differ in the psychological meanings of we-talk. We hypothesized that gender moderated the relationships between we-talk and satisfaction in both work and marriage. Thirty-one dual-earner couples were interviewed about how they coped with work-family stress. The data concerning work and marital satisfaction were collected twice, once during the interview and once 2 years later. The results indicated significant interactions between gender and we-talk in regard to both marital and work satisfaction. Specifically, we-talk that was used by wives increased their husbands’ work and marital satisfaction. In contrast, we-talk that was used by husbands decreased their wives’ work satisfaction. Our findings highlighted that the psychological meanings of we-talk were dependent on the talking context. The applications for reducing work-family stress were discussed.
    Journal of Happiness Studies 01/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10902-015-9621-0
  • Journal of Happiness Studies 01/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10902-015-9619-7
  • Journal of Happiness Studies 01/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10902-015-9616-x
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    ABSTRACT: We studied the predictive impact of proxy “outsider” reports, injury type, and functional independence on trajectories of happiness over the first 5 years following medical treatment for a traumatic spinal cord injury, brain injury, severe burns or inter-articular fractures (total N = 1,271). It was anticipated that lower functional independence and outsider status would predict lower happiness trajectories, with injury type having little effect over time. A measure of functional impairment and the life satisfaction index containing the items that assessed happiness were administered 12, 24, 48, and 60 months post-discharge. Trajectory modeling revealed that lower functional independence significantly predicted lower happiness, regardless of injury type. Outsider reports predicted significantly higher happiness scores than the insiders reported themselves. These differences persisted across time and injury type. Additional analyses found that insider/outsider status accounted for one percent of the variance in happiness scores and functional independence accounted for twenty percent of the variance. Moreover, for all injury groups, there was no evidence for changes in happiness trajectories over time. Outsider accounts differ significantly from insider estimations of variables of positive adjustment accounts but explain little variation in the reports of happiness overall and still have practical and clinical value as secondary sources of information about positive emotional experiences, particularly when reports from the “insider” are not possible.
    Journal of Happiness Studies 01/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10902-014-9610-8
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    ABSTRACT: Although the positive associations between social capital, household income and life satisfaction are well documented, little is known about how income actually shapes the relation between structural social capital and life satisfaction. This study investigates the roles of economic condition in determining the relationships between life satisfaction and three aspects of structural social capital, namely network size, neighborhood interaction and social participation. This study uses a random sample of 6002 adults nested in 2365 families from three regions in China: Beijing, Shanghai and Guangdong-province and applies multilevel linear regression models. The results firstly show that household income and structural social capital are positively associated with life satisfaction. Further analyses on the interaction effects find that household income substantively reduces the association between a social network size and life satisfaction but increases the relationship between social participation and life satisfaction. In addition, the differences between families explain about 25 % unexplained variances of life satisfaction.
    Journal of Happiness Studies 01/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10902-015-9622-z
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    ABSTRACT: To contribute to a growing literature on positive affect (PA) regulation, we report on two studies investigating college students’ responses to hypothetical positive events using a new measure, the Positive Events and Responses Survey (PEARS). The PEARS includes various responses, including savoring (up-regulating PA) and dampening strategies (down-regulating PA), and novel responses (e.g., mass-sharing using Facebook). We examined its convergent and concurrent validity, its relationship with the value of happiness, and motives underlying savoring. Factor analyses supported a 3-factor model: natural savoring (e.g., expressing PA), intentional savoring (e.g., reflecting on the self), and dampening (e.g., minimizing the event). Both natural and intentional savoring were linked to other savoring behaviors, but only natural savoring was linked to perceived savoring ability and (in some bivariate results) to well-being. In contrast, dampening was consistently linked to less savoring and more dampening on other measures, lower well-being, and more depressive symptoms. People reporting valuing happiness more reported higher likelihood of all three types of responses. Qualitative data provided partial support for the hypothesis that intentional savoring strategies are more often used for instrumental reasons (e.g., boosting self-esteem), whereas natural savoring responses may sometimes be more automatic or stem from feeling PA. These studies validate a new measure and suggest that reasons underlying people’s savoring matter.
    Journal of Happiness Studies 01/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10902-015-9625-9
  • Journal of Happiness Studies 01/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10902-015-9615-y
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    ABSTRACT: Macroeconomic downturns have been associated with a decrease in happiness among adults. The aim of this study was to explore the secular trend in happiness among Icelandic adolescents during a period of drastic change in the national economy as well as to identify which groups were most vulnerable and most resilient during the economic crisis. The data used in this study comes from series of population-based surveys of Icelandic adolescents in 2000, 2006, 2009, and 2010. Altogether, a total of 28.484 adolescents participated in the four surveys, representing 84 % of all 14-15 year old adolescents in Iceland. Results indicated that happiness increased by 5 % in the adolescent population from 2000 to 2010 despite the economic crisis. Nevertheless, adolescents who seldom spent time with their parents or perceived difficulties in getting emotional support from parents demonstrated a decrease in happiness. Those who found it easy to get emotional support from parents were happiest at every time point (91-93 %) while those who found it difficult were unhappiest (36-50 %). The association between socio- demographic factors and happiness was explored using multiple linear regression analyses where the year of survey, gender, age, family structure, parent’s education, time spent with parents and emotional support from parents altogether explained 13 % of the happiness variance. Emotional support from parents together with time spent with parents had the largest influence on adolescent’s happiness. An overall increase in time spent with parents was detected which might explain the increase in adolescents´ happiness over time. These results indicate that good relations with parents may protect adolescents from possible negative effect of a national economic crisis.
    Journal of Happiness Studies 01/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10902-015-9639-3
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    ABSTRACT: This online study examined whether regulatory focus and culture moderate the links between self-enhancement/self-protection and life satisfaction. The study assessed promotion and prevention foci, manipulated self-enhancement or self-protection, and measured self-reported life satisfaction in both Western participants (127 English-speaking individuals; 73 female, 50 male, 4 unspecified; M age = 29.01, SD age = 10.26) and Chinese participants (141 Zhanjiang Normal University members; 88 females, 53 males; M age = 22.18, SD age = 3.14). Promotion-focused individuals experienced higher life satisfaction when engaging in self-enhancement strivings, whereas prevention-focused individuals experienced equal levels of life satisfaction when engaging in self-protection strivings, in both Western and Chinese participants. Furthermore, Western participants manifested higher levels of life satisfaction when employing self-enhancement strivings independently of regulatory focus. On the other hand, Chinese participants experienced equivalent levels of life satisfaction when engaging in self-enhancement and self-protection strivings. The findings establish regulatory focus and culture as independent moderators of the association between self-enhancement/self-protection and life satisfaction.
    Journal of Happiness Studies 01/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10902-015-9634-8
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    ABSTRACT: This study extended current positive psychological research by examining the mediating role of coping behavior in the relations between environmental and intrapersonal variables as predictors of adolescent global life satisfaction, based on Evans’ (Soc Indic Res 33:47-88, 1994) proposed model. Specifically, we assessed the relations between personality traits (extraversion, neuroticism) and environmental experiences (stressful life events) predicting early adolescents’ global life satisfaction as mediated by approach and avoidance coping behaviors using a sample of 529 students from one middle school in the southeastern United States. The results supported portions of Evans’ model. Statistically significant relations were found for a number of individual pathways between personality and environmental variables (i.e., predictors) and coping variables (i.e., mediators) as well as between approach coping (i.e., one mediator) and life satisfaction (i.e., outcome). Additionally, a small but statistically significant pathway was found between extraversion and life satisfaction when mediated by approach coping. Results suggest that personality, environmental stressors and coping behaviors may play a role in the development of life satisfaction among early adolescents.
    Journal of Happiness Studies 01/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10902-015-9630-z