The determinants of happiness

Cummins, Robert A. 2012, The determinants of happiness, International journal of happiness and development, vol. 1, no. 1, pp. 86-101.

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Title The determinants of happiness
Author(s) Cummins, Robert A.ORCID iD for Cummins, Robert A.
Journal name International journal of happiness and development
Volume number 1
Issue number 1
Start page 86
End page 101
Total pages 16
Publisher Inderscience Publishers
Place of publication Geneva, Switzerland
Publication date 2012
ISSN 2049-2790
Keyword(s) theory
happiness determinants
positive feelings
homeostatic management
genetic determination
life satisfaction
subjective well-being
mood happiness
national development
Summary Measures of mood happiness are increasingly used to assess the development and progress of nations. The limitations of this approach are, however, considerable. Within developed nations population happiness is quite resistant to change, despite major improvements in the objective standard of living. The reason, we propose, is that levels of subjective wellbeing are psychologically managed for each person, to be held around their genetically determined 'set-point'. This homeostatic management system acts to keep people feeling normally positive about them self, and so resists change. Thus, the search for 'happiness determinants' in the form of objective circumstances is often unrewarding in normally functioning samples. Due to homeostatic resistance, changes in objective variables will have weak effects on mood happiness. If large changes in mood happiness are found, they can be attributed to homeostatic failure and represent pathology.
Language eng
Field of Research 170199 Psychology not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 970111 Expanding Knowledge in the Medical and Health Sciences
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
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Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
School of Psychology
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