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Member Highlight: Oliver Nahkur

1. First, list your current professional title. Second, describe your background, experience, and research as it relates to Quality-of-life studies. 

Analyst at Institute of Social Studies, University of Tartu, Estonia (more information:

My academic training includes social policy, social work and comparative politics at the BA level and sociology at the MA level. In November 2019 I defended my PhD dissertation “Measurement of Interpersonal Destructiveness: the Societal Perspective” (accessible here: in Sociology at the University of Tartu, Dr. Heinz-Herbert Noll being the opponent. Development of a new social indicator–Societal Index of Interpersonal Destructiveness (SIID) which specifically could estimate the level of interpersonal violence and could work as a destructiveness measure of societies worldwide in comparable and regular way-has been the focus of my research since BA level. I have been involved to initiative aiming to enhance communication culture and conflict prevention in Estonia, to several applied sciences research projects, e.g. related to developing rehabilitation program for men who are convicted for domestic violence or doing health technology assessment reports.

2.  What initially attracted you to the field of quality-of-life studies?

In the first year of my PhD studies, I was a bit lost concerning my thesis location on the academic field. I recognized social indicators research and quality-of-life studies as my academic field, when I presented my work in 2016 at Vienna in the ISA RC55 session where prof. Ruut Veenhoven and prof. Ming-Chang Tsai also presented. As a strength, this field has a mission to contribute to the betterment of people’s lives.

3. What are some areas of quality-of-life studies you feel are lacking attention? Any advice for future QoL researchers?

In my opinion, the role of interpersonal relationships and their quality needs more attention if we think about people’s overall quality of life. Several presentations at ISQOLS 2019 annual conference in Granada addressed it, showing a bit more attention to it. Also, a better understanding is needed how our knowledge on well-being and ill-being are related, how they complement each other.

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 have been a member since 2017 when I first attended the ISQOLS annual conference in Innsbruck. Since then, I have attended all the next annual conferences. I very much like the friendly atmosphere and interdisciplinary nature of the conferences. ISQOLS newsletter provides the opportunity to have up-to-date information about the field and its developments. As a relatively new member, I have not had any cooperation projects to other members yet, but I will look forward to it.

5. Feel free to include any other important comments or things you'd like to share with the ISQOLS community.

I am open to different cooperation ideas, e.g. it can be in the form of a research project where I can contribute as a post-doctoral researcher, we can write a joint publication, etc. Please contact me at:

E-mail: or

The International Society for
Quality-of-Life Studies

P.O. Box 118
Gilbert, Arizona, 85299, USA


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