World’s First Happiness Museum Opens in Denmark

Category : Human Interest

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. curate / kyʊˈreɪt / (v) – to choose or organize things that will be displayed in a museum or gallery

    My art professor invited us to an exhibit that he curated.

  2. quality of life / ˈkwɒl ɪ ti əv laɪf / (n) – the standard of happiness, comfort, or health of an individual or population

    People’s quality of life has improved over the past few years.

  3. eager / ˈi gər / (adj) – excited and interested to do something

    The boy was eager to take photos after receiving a camera as a gift.

  4. enigmatic / ˌɛn ɪgˈmæt ɪk / (adj) – mysterious and difficult or impossible to understand

    A lot of people found the movie confusing because of its enigmatic story.

  5. agenda / əˈdʒɛn də / (n) – a goal or plan

    Part of the organization’s agenda is providing shelter for the homeless.


Read the text below.

The world’s first happiness museum has opened in Copenhagen, Denmark.

The Happiness Museum was founded by author Meik Wiking [VAHY-king] and curated by the Happiness Research Institute, a private organization that focuses on people’s well-being and quality of life. The museum has eight exhibits that explore the role of happiness in different areas of people’s lives.

The goal of the museum is to remind visitors what provides value to them and makes them feel good. According to Wiking, he hopes that guests feel eager to make a positive change in the world after visiting the museum.

The Happiness Museum offers an interactive experience through different activities and thought experiments. It also has a geography section that presents how particular environments affect a person’s level of happiness. In this section, visitors can see a world map that shows the happiness rankings of 153 countries.

Other sections of the museum explore the science and history of happiness. The museum also has a room that is dedicated to smiling. In this room, visitors can analyze which side of Mona Lisa’s face is making the enigmatic smile. The museum also displays personal objects donated by people from different parts of the world, which serve as a reminder of moments that made them happy.

Wiking said that the United Nations has made happiness a part of its agenda, and the organization has been publishing the World Happiness Report annually since 2012. He explained that Denmark has consistently ranked as one of the happiest countries in the world, making it a good location for The Happiness Museum.

Currently, the museum is open to the public but has a few restrictions because of Covid-19.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

• Do you think the museum should open in other countries? Why or why not?
• How do you think your country ranks on the World Happiness Report? Explain.

Discussion B

• How do you define happiness? Explain.
• If you could donate an item to the museum, what personal item would you donate to serve as a reminder of a happy moment? Explain.

Category : Human Interest