WORLD HAPPINESS REPORT

WellnessIn previous newsletters we have talked about the need to be more inclusive in the way that we measure the progress of a country’s growth. Current proposals include social and environmental aspects as well as economic growth; the latter often simply obscures the growing gaps between the wealthy and those living in more extreme poverty. The “Happiness Index”, initiated in the country of Bhutan, evaluates the quality of citizens’ lives based on variables such as health, education, social support, degree of freedom, lack of corruption, family unity and other areas. During the beginning of April, a three day conference launched a report introduced by Jeffrey Sachs. The Bhutan case study, which can be accessed in an article at http://tinyurl.com/8ayrlda, tells the story of what has transpired since 1972 when the King decided to measure the progress of well-being instead of wealth in his country. This new index not only became the measure but more importantly became the organizing principle for governance and policy-making as well.

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