Editorial Team

How happy are Indians, really? Is it even possible to get an answer on behalf of a population of 1.4 billion? Starting this Gandhi Jayanti (October 2 of 2021), Dr Ashish Ambasta and his qualified team at HappyPlus Consulting are mounting a massive survey that could provide a definitive answer to how happy India really is.

They will study respondents at a macro and micro level to give us India’s overall happiness score, along with state-wise ranking of happiness.

Dr.Ashish Ambasta, founder and CEO, HappyPlus Consulting said, “Gandhi ji dreamt of a free and happy country. While we have got freedom, we might need to find a way to measure and work on the happiness of each citizen of this country, if we truly want to fulfill his desire of a happy country. This study is a step in this direction.”

“Of course, every year, the United Nations (UN) tries to gauge our happiness levels in its publication, “The World Happiness Report” (by the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network). But it has a limited sample size. And, the answer often indicates we are not happy (in the last seven years alone, India has not fared better than being 117 out of 156 countries, and was 139th out of 149 countries in 2021)”, states Dr.Ambasta.

“Mahatma Gandhi would have wanted Indians to be happy in the nation he helped create and which calls him its Father. To commemorate his memory in their own way, HappyPlus will begin its ‘State of Happiness in India’ drive that will survey no less than 25,000 people and analyse their level of happiness” Says Dr.Ambasta.

Given the current (unhappy) ranking of the country in the world happiness index, HappyPlus aims to deep-dive into India’s state of happiness at two levels – the individual and the collective (indices for both the states and nation) levels.

Happiness is often a culmination of a deep state of satisfaction and internalised feelings of well-being. So, for an individual, answering “How happy are you?” or “How do you feel about your life?” may be difficult, given how deep-seated and subjective happiness triggers and effects are. However, the people’s happiness and emotional well-being on a nation’s development and socio-economic progress are now undeniable, proven in countless studies. In the wake of the Covid pandemic that reshaped our lives, the search for happiness and its benefits are even more acutely felt than ever before.

HappyPlus will measure the state of happiness with two kinds of enquiries – macro and micro. The macro approach, like that taken by the UN, will measure life satisfaction and subjective well-being by asking questions on life evaluation, social support, freedom to make life choices, generosity, corruption, perception, impact of positive and negative emotions.

The micro approach will be unique to HappyPlus’ research and bank on its proprietary WOW Life framework. It would explore questions on being, meaning of existence, relationships, work-life, time scale, achievements, along with the level of stress in the respondent’s life.

The objective is to understand India’s long-term happiness and life satisfaction, and uncover future directions for the nation and states to take in upping the happiness ranking compared to the world’s. The HappyPlus team will closely monitor the results and draft the conclusions to develop a comprehensive map of happiness across the country.

Related Articles