World happiness report

Are you happy? It’s a ques­tion that eco­nom­ists and poll­sters are ask­ing all over the world, hop­ing to gain new in­sight in­to what brings us joy — and why people an­swer dif­fer­ently in dif­fer­ent coun­tries.

Bhutan is lead­ing an in­ter­na­tion­al meet­ing Monday at the United Na­tions, seek­ing to es­tab­lish “next steps to­wards real­iz­ing the vis­ion of a new well-be­ing” that in­clude gauging hap­pi­ness in dif­fer­ent na­tions. The Asi­an coun­try already has a na­tion­al hap­pi­ness in­dex, and is ur­ging oth­ers to fol­low suit.

How happy is your coun­try? In a re­port re­leased for the meet­ing, eco­nom­ists John Helli­well, Richard La­yard and Jef­frey Sachs round up what is known about hap­pi­ness around the globe.

Published: April 2, 2012
Credits: Emily Alpert

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