20 Nisan 2012 Cuma

Gross national happiness: new paradigm

Continuously changing and developing conditions in the world urge human beings to find new solutions, new evolutions and new paradigms.

Continuously developing new technologies, increasing population, quick urbanization, consuming habits, ecological deterioration push the global society to adopt new paradigms in human life.

In recent times, a new paradigm has being discussed. The new paradigm in the economic and social areas would be “gross national happiness” (GNH) instead of gross domestic product (GDP). The new paradigm would be more inclusive including economic growth, environment and wellbeing in the form of democracy. In the future growth of any country may be measured by “gross national happiness” (GNH) instead of GDP.

The said paradigm has a nearly 40-year history which goes back to the early 1970s and had been introduced by the Himalayan nation of Bhutan as a new measurement of national prosperity, focusing firstly on people’s well-being rather than economic productivity.

The assessment of gross national happiness (GNH; was designed in an attempt to define an indicator that measures quality of life or social progress in more holistic and psychological terms than only the economic indicator of gross domestic product (GDP).

In recent years, there has been growing interest in this concept– known as “gross national happiness” (GNH) – with the UN General Assembly adopting a resolution in 2011, regarding the gross domestic product (GDP) indicator “does not adequately reflect the happiness and well-being of people in a country.

The reason for the new paradigm stems from today’s unprecedented ecological, economic and social challenges which have made the achievement of happiness and well-being an unachievable goal for many.

The experiences and developments across the world urge to build a new, innovative guiding vision for sustainability and the future.

The new concept will aim happiness of people instead of nations itself…

We know that today many countries have annually big growth rates, but their peoples cannot get enough shares from those growth, wellbeing and prosperity. Also achieving only growth - disregarding other basic values - has come a point that cannot be maintained in the world.

The UN marks the need for a new economic paradigm that recognizes the parity between the three pillars of sustainable development such as social, economic and environmental well-being are inseparable.

Altogether, they define gross global happiness.

It is also marked to the new paradigm in favor of the planet, which suffers from environmental pollution, require a new economic paradigm to take into account not only economic growth but also protect environment.

The expectation from the new paradigm to bring a more inclusive, equitable and balanced approach that would promote sustainability, eradicate poverty and enhance well-being and happiness.

Basic and humanitarian reason of the new paradigm is to constitute human rights and justice, opportunities and decent jobs, affordable health care, education, good governance and energy access rather than only letting gross domestic product grow.

United Nation expects that by 2015 the international community will have adopted a sustainability-based economic paradigm, committed to promoting true human well-being and happiness, and at the same time ensuring the survival of all species with which we share this planet.

The new paradigm would be also discussed at the UN Sustainable Development Conference, also known as Rio+20, in Brazil in June.

If the new paradigm is adopted across the world as the new yardstick to measure economic growth, new concepts would enter into force and new paradigm will take human beings in the front plan instead of only economic development, as well as mew sanctions will be carried out.

Besides efforts for a better future for all in order to achieve this goal, also action should be taken to implement the rhetoric.