The authors of a large-scale sociological study found that the main cause of people’s unhappiness is not financial difficulties, but discord in their personal lives and mental illness. It is reported by BBC News.
Sociologists and economists at the London School of Economics estimate that tackling depression and anxiety at the national level will reduce social unhappiness by 20%, while eliminating poverty by only 5%. Moreover, the fight against mental illnesses will not cost the state budget anything, since the economic benefits from such a fight will be greater than the costs.
The researchers said that it was time for the state to move to a new role: creating not wealth for the people, but happiness. “Earlier, states successfully fought poverty and unemployment, developed education and improved the health of citizens. Now is the time to devote as much time as possible to family violence, alcoholism, depression and anxiety, exam-related fears and so on, “said study leader Lord Richard Layard.
Scientists also note that although the quality of life in Western countries has increased greatly over the past 40 years, the level of life satisfaction in Australia, Germany, the United States and the UK has changed little for the better.
The results of the research will be presented at a conference on wellbeing, which takes place December 12-13 at the London School of Economics.