Measuring wellbeing: How and why?

Louise Lambert, Lauren Hotchkiss, Holli Anne Passmore

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

2 Citations (Scopus)


A focus on wellbeing and happiness in social discourse has necessarily raised questions about how to appropriately measure and manage wellbeing, and about the validity of reported subjective experiences. Historically, objective measures have monopolized the arena of wellbeing, as it was believed that a single measure, like GDP, income, education, or crime rates accurately reflected a state of psychosocial prosperity in nations. More recently, a sole reliance on such indicators is increasingly being discouraged. Governments are urged to consider wellbeing and happiness a public good and not a private individual matter. In this chapter we discuss why it is important to measure the subjective aspects of wellbeing and how a theoretical orientation can help in this regard. We propose tools to develop a dashboard and present a number of best practise recommendations gleaned from the empirical literature. While we target recommendations at government bodies, we encourage corporations, organizations, educational institutions, and health care providers to follow suit and include the collection of wellbeing data in their efforts.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPositive Psychology in the Middle East/North Africa
Subtitle of host publicationResearch, Policy, and Practise
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Number of pages28
ISBN (Electronic)9783030139216
ISBN (Print)9783030139209
Publication statusPublished - Mar 30 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology
  • General Social Sciences


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