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Philippines to have gross national happiness index

Several countries use the Gross National Happiness Index to measure the contentment of a nation’s population based on several socioeconomic pillars such as economy, environment and good governance. File photo

MANILA, Philippines – The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) is preparing the creation of a local Gross National Happiness Index to measure the level of satisfaction in everyday living among Filipinos amid robust economic growth.

NEDA Deputy Director General Rosemarie Edillon said the baseline study for the special survey would be conducted next year to create the questionnaire and the metrics for the survey.

Several countries use the Gross National Happiness Index to measure the contentment of a nation’s population based on several socioeconomic pillars such as economy, environment and good governance.

Edillon said the socioeconomic domains of the Filipino-style happiness index would be anchored on the pillars of the Ambisyon Natin 2040 report that has been adopted as the country’s long-term vision on the improvement of the standard of living, finances, security and ease of transacting with the government.

The Ambisyon survey, initiated in 2015 and completed in February, revealed most Filipinos desire to attain within the next two decades a family-centric life “free from worry and hardship.”

This was further defined as having the following comforts: a car, a medium-sized home, the ability to send all their children to college, taking occasional trips around the country and having the time to relax with family and friends. 

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Filipinos envision a Philippines that is predominantly middle-class, enjoys good governance and peace and order.

The happiness index in the making would be done every three years alongside the poverty statistics, said Edillon.

As a special survey, it would not be a leading economic indicator but would be a strong monitor of the attainment of the goals under the Ambisyon Natin survey.

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