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  • 1. About Happy Planet Platform

Connecting happiness, science and people: this is what Happy Planet Platform is about. Through the development of activities and policy based on the science of happiness we hope to increase the focus on happiness in everyday life for individuals, companies, organisations and communities. We aim to achieve this shift from emphasizing a focus on economic growth to a focus on well-being, by means of using a different indicator for progress instead of GDP: the Happy Planet Index.

Our mission is to promote the HPI and to advance the use of the HPI as a complementary indicator for progress. Happy Planet Platform takes part in the international Beyond GDP movement, which has the primary objective to cease merely emphasizing the pursuit of economic growth in the international community. Our activities are divided into four different areas:

  • research: to increase the use of HPI in the Netherlands
  • projects: specific target audience (e.g. students) and duration
  • events: fun and accessible activities for the public at large
  • training: in-depth and practical courses for a happier and more sustainable life

Do you want to find out what your HPI score is and what you can do to increase your level of happiness? Take the HPI survey and visit our site for more information. Or join us!

To reach a higher HPI we focus on ‘happiness’. For this reason, we are working with the Five Ways To Well-Being - also developed by NEF-. The Five Ways are five proven ways to act which have a positive, increasing effect on one’s own level of happiness. The Five Ways are: be aware, keep learning, be active, connect and give. These actions have a pivotal role in our approach to promoting the HPI to a wide audience. Through our work we hope to encourage and help people to experience more happiness by teaching them to integrate these Five Ways into their daily routine. Our goal is to achieve a higher level of happiness for the Netherlands. Our long term goal is to achieve a higher Happy Planet Index as well. HPP header HPI en 5 WAYS

  • 2. What have we done?


  • Happy Planet Index of Leiden June ‘13: calculating the HPI of Leiden at a large event of Stadslab Leiden.


  • ‘Box of happiness’ March ’13 – present: project on Happiness at Work “Doosisgeluk”, collaboration with Ynnovate. Distributing boxes to management of divisions within the government. The ‘boxes of happiness’ contain scientific research on the science of happiness and tools for applying the Five Ways to Well-being at work. Making employees happy which eventually leads to more creativity, productivity and collaboration.
  • Educational project at Leonardo Middle School, Leiden March ’14: students will be taught about the HPI and they will learn to calculate their own HPI. During the entire week they will gain insight in the Five Ways to Well-being and eloborate on one of the Five Ways. They will present their findings at the end of the week in any way that appeals to them.


  • Expert-meeting on the Happy Planet Index Febr ’13: Discussion on the significance of the HPI with a diverse group of people (e.g. government officers, journalists, people working for NGO’s and commercial enterprises). Concluded that the HPI is a good indicator of progress. Important to recognize that more data extracted from sources on local scale is needed to calculate the HPI for smaller regions, e.g. cities, provinces/counties. Also important to connect data to other important indicators of progress, such as inequality.
  • HPP Happy Coffee Aug ‘14: two HPP Happy Coffee (in The Hague and Leiden) for people to get to know Happy Planet Platform.


  • Training HPI and the 5 Ways to Well-being May ‘14 and Aug’14


  • Presentation at Universiteit of Eindhoven Febr ‘13
  • Pitch 2013, Ministry of Internal Affairs June ‘13: reaching the final of Pitch 2013 with the idea of implementing the Happy Planet Index
  • Local radio Leiden (June ‘13)
  • 2-page article in national newspaper Trouw Apr ’14: interview with Nic Marks (initiator HPI) and Koen Vredebregt (HPP)
  • Theatre Febr ‘14: Stukafest Leiden Apr ’14: PS Theater – Natland (5 evenings)

  • 3. Our Team

The team consists of young, enthusiastic and creative academics. Our goal is to promote happiness in general, using a scientific approach.

  • Matthijs Steeneveld, co-founder, MSc. Clinical Psychology, expert positive (organisational) psychology, coach & trainer
  • Bart Hoekstra, project leader HPI survey & website developer, student Future Planning Studies
  • Katie Janssen, project leader Events /Well-being & Politics, student Bèta- Gamma
  • Sjir Hoeijmakers, freelance project leader Well-being & Politics, MSc. Ecometrics, entrepreneurial idealist