On 6 October, Dr Saamdu Chetri, Executive Director of the Gross National Happiness (GNH) Centre in Dewaling, Bumthang, Bhutan, gave a talk to our students in the Master of Applied Research in Social Sciences (MRESS) programme. Opening the talk to benefit more, the session was well-attended by students and staff of Singapore University of Social Sciences (SUSS) and Singapore Institute of Management (SIM), and the members of the public, curious to find out about Bhutan's experiences with GNH. Dr Chetri explained how Bhutan developed the GNH measure — a multidimensional measure comprising nine domains, with each domain consisting of multiple indicators by building on four key pillars: fair socio-economic development, conservation and promotion of a vibrant culture, environmental protection, and good governance. He also shared how GNH is used to guide the Bhutan Government's policies in various areas such as education and infrastructure. The session culminated with a question-and-answer session where the audience was eager to find out how countries like Singapore can draw from Bhutan’s experience in actively promoting happiness as a national policy. Dr Chetri was accompanied by Dr Chan Keen Loong, Head of Psychiatry at Khoo Teck Puat Hospital, who was his host for his visit to Singapore.
(From left) Professor Tsui Kai Chong, SUSS Provost; Dr Saamdu Chetri; Associate Professor Ng Wei Ting, Head of MRESS programme, and Dr Chan Keen Loong.