Germany mulls 'happiness index'

17th January 2011, Comments 0 comments

German politicians Monday began investigating ways to gauge the country's quality of life and prosperity as a way to complement the gross domestic product (GDP) indicator in Europe's top economy.

Following in the footsteps of other major European economies Britain and France, a cross-party committee headed by speaker of parliament Norbert Lammert will issue its recommendations in two-and-a-half years.

In London, Prime Minister David Cameron has asked the Office of National Statistics to prepare methods to measure the "general wellbeing" of Britain.

Canada is investigating the viability of adopting a similar initiative and French President Nicolas Sarkozy has announced that he intended to use happiness levels as one method of assessing the country's economic progress.

The pioneer of the index is the insular Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan, famed for its adoption of "gross domestic happiness" as the key measurement of its success

© 2011 AFP

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