Global Happiness
A Guide to the Most Contented (and Discontented) Places around the Globe
by Roman Adrian Cybriwsky
December 2015, 301pp, 7x10
1 volume, Greenwood

Hardcover: 978-1-4408-3556-8
$98, £73, 82€, A140
eBook Available: 978-1-4408-3557-5
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

Surprisingly, happiness and discontentment are found in every region of the world.

An authoritative, comprehensive, and highly accessible assessment of the happiest and least happy countries and cities in the world, as well as of the happiest and least happy cities and states in the United States.

Which are the happiest countries in the world and which nations are the least contented? Which cities in the world are considered the happiest and unhappiest? Which American cities and states are at the top of the list and which ones rank poorly? Presenting findings that are based on solid data and authoritative information, this book offers a bold take on the geography of happiness around the world—and presents results that are often unexpected. It enables readers to make informed cross-cultural comparisons between countries and world cities, and uniquely synthesizes global information in a way that allows us answer the important question: “What makes us happy?”

A book like no other, Global Happiness: A Guide to the Most Contented (and Discontented) Places around the Globe tackles the complex equation of determining what places offer the happiest living experiences by considering quality of life, prospects for the future, social relations, confidence in good government, and many other factors that together constitute critical differences in living experience. The author—a professor of geography and urban studies as well as a world traveler—also takes into account the current events, politics, and environmental situations of specific regions, states, and cities, and considers what residents of the cities and countries say about their own places to derive accurate and fair assessments.


  • Supplies insightful and interesting information about all of the most contented and least contented countries and cities around the globe—and the factors that make the people who live in these places notably happy or discontented
  • Examines and explains the complexity of happiness and contentment as they apply to specific places and regions in the world
  • Synthesizes and evaluates the maze of existing rankings of cities and countries in the world with fresh and original information to produce a novel assessment of the geography of global happiness
  • Presents information about cities and countries in all parts of the world fairly and in both positive and negative lights
Roman Adrian Cybriwsky, PhD, is professor of geography and urban studies at Temple University, Philadelphia, PA. He is the author of a dozen books, including ABC-CLIO's Capital Cities of the World: An Encyclopedia of Geography, History, and Culture as well as Kyiv, Ukraine: The City of Domes and Demons from the Collapse of Socialism to the Mass Uprising of 2013–2014 and three books about Tokyo. Cybriwsky travels often and widely for research and as an invited speaker, resulting in his unusually wide personal geography.


"This insightful, enlightening work of urban geography is well-organized and indexed, providing a balanced understanding of the dimensions of happiness, explored in both its positive and negative contexts. Summing Up: Highly recommended. All readership levels."—Choice, August 1, 2016
By clicking “Accept All Cookies”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyze site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts.
Accept All Cookies | Decline.