Development policy and wellbeing: Bhutan's Gross National Happiness Index

Should policymakers pay more attention to Gross National Product (GNP)? – or Gross National Happiness (GNH)?

Bhutan is known for its longstanding stance that GNH is more important than GNP. In a world hungry for GDP alternatives, this event will share up-to-date and sophisticated research on the concept and measurement of GNH.

Our keynote speaker, Dasho Karma Ura, is the founding President of the Centre for Bhutan Studies and GNH in the Royal Government of Bhutan, has been a Visiting Fellow at the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative with support from the University’s Public Policy Challenge Fund, and is an Honorary Member of the SCR in Magdalen College. He will share his decades of leadership advancing development that balances material and spiritual, political, social and environmental aspects.

Bhutan’s GNH Index takes an integrated look at people’s lives, assessing the sufficiency of the causes and conditions of well-being across 9 domains and 33 indicators. It constructs a society-wide gradient of well-being that spans psychological well-being, health, education, living standards, community vitality, cultural diversity, environmental resilience, governance, and time use. It distinguishes inequities by gender, region, and occupation, and is used to screen government policies and programmes.