By the Blouin News Politics staff

U.A.E.’s happiness plan: innovative, but how effective?

by in Middle East.

7430929940_56c2874b82_zOn Wednesday, the 2016 World’s Happiness¬†report¬†was published by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network and Columbia University, ranking Denmark #1 and Burundi last out of 156 countries. While economic rankings based on GDP and competitiveness have been the standard for many years, there is a growing movement towards taking into account more subjective factors like happiness, life satisfaction, freedom, and even “having someone to count on in times of trouble,” as this report does.

In fact, 5 countries – Bhutan, Ecuador, Scotland, the U.A.E., and Venezuela – now have appointed Ministers of Happiness, making it a public policy goal on par with providing quality education and affordable housing.

The U.A.E. is taking happiness even more seriously. In fact, last week the country’s…

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