February 2017 Member Highlight: Wolfgang Glatzer
1. Describe your background, experience, and research as it relates to Quality-of-life studies.
I can look back on a long professional life with social indicators- and quality of life-research in Germany. My scientific career was from the beginning related to social reporting using social indicators and to quality of life as a concept for the subjective well-being of people and the good society. At this time the term "Lebensqualität" was unknown in Germany and began to spread through scientific and everyday language. Qol went unexpectedly far beyond its original design. In social sciences this process was accompanied by studies on the qol in Germany (my main study was 1980 with Wolfgang Zapf). Also social reporting found a lot of resonance in this time. For example the "Datenreport" for Germany was established and this widespread publication is still alive. After many activities in qol-research my interest was finally directed toward global questions as the edition of "global handbook of qol" and the study on the "Pursuit of Well-being" (Halloran foundation). These were satisfying work fields and with the exception of the internal trouble 2011/12 the ISQOLS-context was a successful, cooperative and friendly group which I would not like to miss in my life.
2. What initially attracted you to the field of quality-of-life studies?
In theoretical respect the discussion around the deficits of GDP and economic growth raised the question for the measurement of a betterment of societies. In practical respect it was the invitation,which I received to the first ISQOLS-conference 1996 in Prince George. Of course the ISQOL-conferences remained a continual attraction to meet nice people and their approaches in the field of qol-research.
3. What are some areas of quality-of-life studies you feel are lacking attention? Any advice for future QoL researchers?
I think the variety of qol-research is rather high but the repetition and critical proof in the course of time seems to week for me. We should find out more precise what is our solid knowledge?
4. How long have you been a member of ISQOLS? Why did you choose to be a member of ISQOLS? How has your involvement in ISQOLS impacted your career/research/advancement in your knowledge of QoL studies?
I met Alex Michalos at a German Social Indicators conference already in 1972 but ISQOLS has been founded much later after the 1996-conference of Prince George. Around this time I claimed for the ISQOLS-membership. The topic of qol has been in Germany one of my significant research interest. My international career has been influenced rather positive by ISQOLS. I was happy to be elected as ISQOLS-president and to receive the distinguished award. Besides I. was a successful organizer of the ISQOLS-conference 2003 in Frankfurt. My qol-publications where numerous and received a lot of attention not at least in some TV-presentations.
I miss more communication about our books and other publications: reviews, comments, critics, rewards. There are important books on the table, but nearly no review which we would need in our journals and also in the international press.
Wolfgang Glatzer can be reached at: