Focus on Happiness

What makes up a happy person? What are the factors that influence people’s happiness and how do they interact? If we understand how the “Happiness System” works, we will be able to help more people find greater enjoyment in life.

Our Goal:

  • Happier People.

Our Vision:

  • A society where people are content and enjoy life.
  • Healthy and capable individuals.
  • Productive and successful business organisations.
Happiness Research Organisation

About us

Happiness Research Organisation (HRO) is an independent research institute based in Düsseldorf, Germany. In our research projects, we closely investigate people’s everyday life and gain insight into their individual sense of happiness. By adopting a research approach oriented towards everyday life we bring science closer to the real life and true feelings of people.

HRO is an international organisation that works closely with renowned scientists and experts specialising in various fields, both at national and international level. Thanks to our network of cross-disciplinary expertise we are able to implement diverse research projects – on behalf of and in collaboration with universities and public institutions. We also conduct applied research projects for companies and consumers.

How happy are we? When? Where? And with whom?



Happiness Research Organisation’s team of researchers is made up of psychologists, IT experts and economists. Our Scientific Advisory Board is staffed with internationally renowned Professors ensuring that all projects are carried out to highest scientific and ethical standards.

In collaboration with our partners, we move the relationship between happiness, health and productivity into focus. With this approach we strive to not only lay the scientific foundation on which to base a shift in the values of society. But in the long term, we aim to establish a political framework to boost happiness and achieve a better quality of life.

What makes us happy? When? Where? And with whom?


Kai Ludwigs

Kai Ludwigs

Director of the Happiness Research Organisation
Kai Ludwigs is a studied Psychologist and studied Economist. Already during his studies he started to research how constructs like happiness, well-being and quality of life can be measured more accurately using modern technologies. Today he is an international expert in the topics of well-being, positive psychology, time use and happiness. He is a Board member of the International Society for Quality of Life Studies (ISQOLS) und der International Association for Time Use Research (IATUR).


Stephan Erdtmann

Stephan Erdtmann

Co-Founder & Head of IT
Stephan Erdtmann is a studied Computer Scientist. In 2012 his best friend Kai Ludwigs asked him if he could imagine to program a research app to measure happiness. Since this day he is working in the field of app-based research and is an international expert in this field.


Research Partners & Cooperations

  • Prof. Dr. Ruut Veenhoven Erasmus University Rotterdam
  • Prof. Dr. Ronnie Schöb Freie Universität Berlin
  • Prof. Dr. Jürgen Schupp DIW / SOEP
  • Prof. Dr. Rhonda Phillips Purdue University
  • Prof. Dr. Richard Lucas Michigan State University
  • Prof. Dr. Marc Hassenzahl Folkwang Universität der Künste
  • Prof. Dr. Grit im Brahm Ruhr-Universität Bochum
  • Prof. Dr. Uwe Schneidewind Bergische Universität Wuppertal
  • Prof. Dr. Carmelo Vazquez Complutense University of Madrid
  • Prof. Dr. Martin Kocher Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München
  • Prof. Dr. Seung Jong Lee Seoul National University
  • Prof. Dr. Youngwha Kee Soongsil University
  • Prof. Dr. Young-Chool Choi Chungbuk National University
  • PD Dr. Ralf Klamma RWTH Aachen University
  • Dr. Martijn Burger Erasmus University Rotterdam
  • Dr. Susana Garcia Diez Statistisches Bundesamt
  • Dr. Clemens Hetschko Freie Universität Berlin
  • Dr. Oliver Haas Corporate Happiness
  • Dr. Michael Derntl RWTH Aachen University
  • Dr. David Richter DIW / SOEP
  • Dr. Scott Cloutier Arizona State University
  • Dr. Milena Nikolova Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)
  • Dr. Bernd M. Lindenberg
  • Dr. Ilona Bürgel
  • Dr. Eckart von Hirschhausen
  • Martijn Hendriks Erasmus University Rotterdam
  • Kathi Wachnowski Ruhr-Universität Bochum
  • Randall J. Birnberg M.A.
  • Michael Tomoff

Contact Us

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Grafenberger Allee 342 | 40235 Düsseldorf | Germany

(+49) 211 641 360 81 (Mo-Fr: 10am - 5pm CET)