Tag Archives: happiness

How the Joneses change with age, or how I use my quantum physics book to show off

I was recently reading an article about Higgs Boson, and irritated by the fact that I wasn’t sure I entirely understood what was going on, decided that I needed to purchase a book about quantum physics. I’ve been reading it … Continue reading

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Why are the French miserable?

According to a recent slew of books, French children don’t throw food. And French women don’t get fat. I have noticed that they often have nice scarves. So chic. But does that make them happy? No. According to happiness surveys, … Continue reading

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What’s the meaning of happiness?

Satisfaction? Contentment? Excitement? Peace? All of the above? Earlier this week, the UK’s Office for National Statistics (ONS) published findings from its initial investigation into the UK’s subjective well-being. It tested out various types of questions, asking people about their … Continue reading

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Tall and handsome

By now, we know that because of some biological reason or other, being tall gives you an advantage, especially if you’re a man. In fact if you’re a short man, you no doubt deal with “humourous” comments every day – … Continue reading

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When economists take an interest in beauty

A while ago, I posted Sitting Pretty, about research that showed that attractiveness is an advantage for female chess players: male players tend to play riskier strategies when faced by an attractive female opponent. Beauty, economics and society seems to be … Continue reading

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Is democracy a luxury?

There is a good quote from Yes Prime Minister, the 1980s sitcom parodying British politics, when Prime Minister Jim Hacker is discussing foreign policy with senior civil servant, Sir Humphrey Appleby. Jim (Prime Minister): Humphrey, are you saying that Britain … Continue reading

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Does online shopping make you happy?

Consumerism has a bad name, and recently has been suggested as a reason for teenagers stealing trainers during the London riots. So it is therefore intriguing to see a new paper from Fabio Sabitini at the University of Rome’s Department … Continue reading

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How happy people can drive you to suicide

At university, there was a girl with wavy blonde hair who was always smiling. It was slightly unnerving. We discussed whether she had been lobotomised. She was happy – and it was annoying, so we called her Prozac, which helped … Continue reading

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How to make time work for you

Time – you can’t stretch it and you can’t control it. Or can you? I’ve just been reading a research paper, “If money doesn’t make you happy, consider time”, by Jennifer Aaker and Melanie Rudd from Stanford University, and Cassie Mogliner … Continue reading

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Can the happiness index makes us happier?

The UK Government is planning to publish regular measures of the UK population’s happiness. On the surface, this seems like a good thing. We all know that measuring income alone is unlikely to capture well-being, but can measuring happiness really … Continue reading

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