Global Happiness Policy Report: Happy Cities in a Smart World

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After decades of research into human happiness, it is time to turn evidence into action for human wellbeing. But governments and city-builders need pragmatic strategies and examples for inspiration. The UN Sustainable Development Solutions launched the Global Happiness Policy Report to survey and share best practice policies drawn from the research literature and government experiences around the globe. The Global Happiness Council (GHC) is a global network of leading specialists… Continue reading

Happy Homes: Building Sociability through Multi-family Housing

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Visit our interactive tool The way we design multi-family housing can make or break social connections and trust. Social isolation is a public health concern in cities around the world. The location and design of multi-family housing has a significant impact on local relationships, neighbourhood trust and residents’ sense of belonging. With support from BC Housing’s Building Excellence Research & Education Grant, Happy City developed a toolkit that will change… Continue reading

Happy City Workshop at the 23rd Congress for the New Urbanism

by Charles Montgomery on

The Congress for the New Urbanism is a natural home for urban wellbeing work. CNU emerged in part as a response to the harms associated with urban sprawl. Since their formation, CNU members have promoted the creation of sustainable, walkable, mixed-use neighborhoods that lead to better health and economic outcomes. The CNU Charter, specifically, is aimed at reclaiming cities and towns from the destructive force of suburban sprawl. But as… Continue reading

Happy City Workshop with the Centre for Civic Governance

by Charles Montgomery on

How can municipal leaders build happier communities? In March, 2015, elected officials from cities around the Province of British Columbia took up the challenge at the Centre for Civic Governance High Ground conference. With help from the Happy City team, they explored how to use emerging evidence from public health, psychology and other fields to design more wellbeing into communities. They then focused their attention on a case study: Lower… Continue reading

Building Happiness

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Cities should make us happy by fostering emotionally intelligent design and creating closely connected communities, with the benefits shared by everyone. – Charles Montgomery “Whatever creates or increases happiness, or some part of happiness, we ought to do; whatever destroys or hampers happiness, or gives rise to its opposite, we ought not to do,” said Aristotle. So what is a city for? I believe the answer is straightforward: the highest… Continue reading