Ruut Veenhoven Award

The award was created in 2014 in honour of Emeritus Professor Ruut Veenhoven (1942), a prominent researcher and one of the founders of the field of Happiness Studies. The prize carries an award of the equivalent of 2,500 Euro plus a certificate of appreciation. It is intended to award outstanding research in the field of Happiness Studies by a promising researcher; a researcher who has performed exceptional research and is just embarking on a research career (having obtained a doctorate within the last six years).

Every year the prize is presented at the Ruut Veenhoven Seminar in Happiness Studies. The Erasmus Happiness Economics Research Organisation (EHERO) invites the submission of research work written in English. The winner will be selected by a committee headed by Emeritus Professor Justus Veenman, Erasmus University Rotterdam, The Netherlands.

Goal, Procedure and Jury

  • The Award recognizes annually a scholar (having obtained a doctorate within the last six years) who has demonstrated innovation and excellence in Happiness Studies through the publication of a research paper or PhD thesis of outstanding quality. Research papers should have been accepted for publication in a peer reviewed international journal. However, no work should be submitted that has been published before 2012. The submission has to be accompanied by a CV and a summary of the submitted work in English (maximum of 2 pages).
  • An exception is made for female scholars who have been on maternity leave. They should have obtained their doctorate within the last eight years, where no work should be submitted that has been published before 2010.
  • Scholars can maximally submit one research paper or one chapter from their PhD thesis.
  • The jury will consist of a chairman and four full professors; they will be supported by a secretary and two advisors (who are not part of the jury). More information on the composition of the committee can be found below.
  • Documents have to be submitted in electronic format (pdf) to
  • Knowledge of the intended recipient of the prize must be treated with confidentiality.
  • The winner will be invited to the Ruut Veenhoven Colloquium in Happiness Studies in Rotterdam of that year, all costs covered.

Previous winners:

2015-2016: Dr. Jan-Emmanuel De Neve (University of Oxford). 

2016-2017: Dr. Louis Tay (Purdue University). 

2017-2018: Dr. Lara Aknin (Simon Fraser University)

2018-2019: Dr. Moshen Joshanloo (Keimyung University, South Korea)