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‘We may be among the 25 happiest countries in world’: Survey

HappyPlus Consulting measured happiness among Indians at both the macro and the micro-level, a first for any happiness survey for India.

SNS | New Delhi |

HappyPlus Consulting, India’s happiness experts, has revealed its findings from its massively-mounted Indian happiness study and it contradicts the UN World Happiness Report 2022’s score for our happiness index.

The anchor happiness score — for life evaluation — is arrived at by both the studies with similar questions (the UN calls them ‘life ladder’ questions). However, while the global index puts India at a measly 3.77, the first-of-its-kind, extensive Indian study finds the metric to be at 6.84, distinctly higher than the annual UN happiness report over the years.

Please note that HappyPlus Consulting mounted the State of Happiness Report on a scale that is around seven times that of the UN sample size for India, polling 20,073 people across 36 states/UTs in 2021-22 in its maiden edition.

“Since I am a researcher of happiness, the annual UN report on happiness has been of interest since its inception. India’s ranking has only gone downhill over the years. This year, too, we are at #136 out of 146 countries that were ranked. Seeing the trend, I decided to pursue this in-depth and conceptualised a study similar to what the UN does but with a major difference: With a representative sample size that is approximately 7X of the UN poll. We asked similar questions to be able to fairly compare the scores in both reports. Given the key happiness score, India, according to us, may easily be ranked among the 25 happiest countries in the world, instead of the bottom 10 of the list,” said Dr Ashish Ambasta, founder-CEO of HappyPlus Consulting.

At the macro level, subjective well-being was measured using three metrics (as per the approach designed by global studies) to assess happiness across India and gauge what makes people declare themselves happy in the Indian context.

At the micro-level, the firm referred to the WOW Life framework to understand how an individual perceives happiness and life of thriving. It covers all the dimensions that are important for an individual to lead a life of joy, happiness, and fulfilment, and contribute further to society and the world.

Apart from subjective well-being indicators such as life evaluations, positive and negative emotions, the study included questions on social support, freedom to make life choices, perception of corruption, along with state-level per capita net State Domestic Product, CPI, literacy rate, healthy-life expectancy at birth, MPI and Health Index.

Dr.Ambasta added, “Given the culture, tradition, and the strong systems India has, even intuitively it feels difficult to believe that India will be in the bottom 15 places of this index.”