Happy City Index

hci_logo_ck_500pxA new measure of city progress

Happy City Index is a progress report on the conditions for wellbeing at a city level. It helps decision makers understand and assess the determinants of wellbeing and establishes the foundation for better decisions and resource use for improving lives.  


On a national and international scale, policymakers are beginning to focus on measures of prosperity beyond traditional economic indicators, such as GDP.  In the UK, the National Wellbeing Programme uses national level indicators to “measure what matters”.  These measures are used to monitor the nation’s progress and assess and develop policy.  On a more local scale, however, there are no such wellbeing initiatives – a consistent framework that uses local authority level indicators to measure what matters for city wellbeing.   

The Happy City Index (HCI) was developed by Happy City and the New Economics Foundation (NEF) in collaboration with local, national and international expects.  It has been designed to monitor city progress, defined as a city’s success in providing the conditions that create ‘sustainable wellbeing’.  These conditions are “what matter” for individuals, communities and cities as a whole to thrive.  We define sustainable wellbeing as providing equal opportunities to thrive for present and future generations

The HCI aims to be a practical tool that can help local policymakers understand how well their city is doing in comparison to the other cities and prioritise key policy areas.  To find out about the Framework and Methodology take a look here.  Or explore the overall 2016 results here and the city ones here 

81% of Britons believe that the Government should prioritise creating the greatest happiness, not the greatest wealth.

The Happy City Index will be published on an annual basis. We are working with partners to expand it’s application to all UK cities. We are also working to develop a range of exciting new digital ways for decision makers and citizens to explore and use the data are being developed. To find out more or to get involved, please get in touch at index@happycity.org.uk

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