This edition includes:

  1. New Directions in Happiness: Consumers look for meaning as well as materialism
  2. The Future of Global Brands: Why the next generation will be built on co-creation
  3. The Value of Guiding Principles: Linking action and performance to strategic direction
  4. Brazil on the Go: “The country is running so fast that it is hard to keep up”

The UK government is starting to measure happiness. Brazil looks likely to make the pursuit of happiness an inalienable right. And in China, local government officers are being given the new task of measuring and improving the happiness of their communities.

These, and many more state-led happiness initiatives, add up to a global happiness moment. It’s been pushed to the fore by a wide range of factors and trends. For instance we have our increasingly busy and worried societies, where the average American child is now more anxious than child psychiatric patients in the 1950s, where globally 60% feel the world is becoming a riskier place and are looking for ways to find happiness in spite of this fear. Meanwhile the global recession has forced many to re-evaluate priorities, with 52% in the UK finding they can do without many things and still be happy, and the focus on physical health is giving way to greater attention to emotional wellbeing. Finally happiness science is emerging to better measure, understand, and improve happiness levels.

All this indicates happiness is not simply a fad, and consumers are taking note too – with 43% in the UK feeling that society needs to re-evaluate its priorities and put people’s happiness higher than economic growth on the government agenda. Yet only 26% in the UK are interested in help and advice on how to be happier, as many remain uncertain how they feel about this emerging issue. Indeed while there has been a lot of talk about happiness, there has been limited attention to how this will play out, and what this will mean for consumers and brands.

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