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Taking Happiness Seriously | EAGxVirtual 2022
22 October | 6:00 pm - 6:45 pm
Most people agree that happiness matters, even if they value other things too. Thanks to the growing field of subjective wellbeing research, it is now possible to work out the best ways to make people happier in a scientifically rigorous way. But such work has only just begun – it is new both to effective altruism and to policymaking more generally. Barry will show how our intuitions about what will make us happy are often wrong and that decades of economic growth have done little to improve average wellbeing. He will then describe the pioneering research the Happier Lives Institute has done to compare the cost-effectiveness of different interventions in terms of subjective wellbeing. This has led to the surprising finding that treating depression in low-income countries is 9x more cost-effective than providing direct cash transfers. Barry will call for a new wave of research and action that takes us closer to a world where everyone lives their happiest life.