The Pursuit of Happiness

Tufts Magazine illustration    

The Pursuit of Happiness

 

Taking a cue from a small Buddhist kingdm, Tom Barefoot, A68, urges governments to rethink how they measure progress.  

By Michael Blanding, illustration by Gaby D’Allessandro

“Quick, what makes you happy? If you said economic growth, you are in the minority. When most of us think about what gives us joy in life, it’s things like spending time with friends and family, enjoying the outdoors, and volunteering for a cause. And yet none of these things are contained in official measures of progress such as Gross National Product and Gross Domestic Product.

For decades, countries around the world have measured progress in purely economic terms: growth and consumption. That provides a skewed view of development, says Tom Barefoot, A68, co-coordinator of Gross National Happiness USA, an organization that aims to change the focus of government from increasing consumption to increasing well-being—and in a few short years has already started to change hearts and minds in state and municipal governments. ….”

READ MORE: to read this article from “Tufts Magazine,” which quotes GNHUSA Co-Founder and Vice President Tom Barefoot extensively, click here