20 March 2016
The day was inspired by a speech Secretary General Ban Ki-moon gave at a UN General Assembly meeting on Happiness and Well-Being: Defining a New Economic Paradigm. The meeting was an initiative of Bhutan, a country that rates national happiness above national income and has adopted a goal of Gross National Happiness rather than Gross National Product.
The Secretary General stated that the world “needs a new economic paradigm that recognizes the parity between the three pillars of sustainable development. Social, economic and environmental well-being are indivisible. Together they define gross global happiness."
The General Assembly subsequently proclaimed March 20th the International Day of Happiness recognizing "the relevance of happiness and well-being as universal goals and aspirations in the lives of human beings around the world and the importance of their recognition in public policy objectives."
This year, the International Day of Happiness is focused on Climate Action for a Happy Planet. I don't imagine the planet is too happy with us, but if we could all just start ranking its welfare over Gross National Product, we might cheer it up.
Posted by Bill Longstaff at 12:10 am