Wellbeing Policy: Past, Present, Future

Friday 7 August at 6.00pm, at the Presbyterian Community Centre, 91 Tenby Street, Wanaka.
Professor Arthur Grimes, Chair of Wellbeing and Public Policy School of Government, Victoria University of Wellington.
Cost – $5 per person.

The New Zealand government has placed great store on a “wellbeing approach to policy”. In this talk I review antecedents of this approach stretching back to the enlightenment (and before). I then examine two modern approaches to wellbeing policy – based on concepts of subjective wellbeing and on capabilities. I explore the application of these ideas across a range of the social sciences including economics, sociology and psychology. A range of evidence indicates that an approach to policy based on measured subjective wellbeing has considerable merit. Findings from the literature are being used to formulate wellbeing-oriented public policies across a number of countries and, to close, I briefly review the success or otherwise of these explicit wellbeing-based policy approaches.

Professor Arthur Grimes holds the Chair of Wellbeing and Public Policy at Victoria University of Wellington’s School of Government. He is also Senior Fellow at Motu Economic and Public Policy Research, Chair of the Hugo Group (a network of 100 New Zealand corporates) and a member of the World Wellbeing Panel. Prior positions include Chairman and Chief Economist of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, Chief Executive of Southpac Investment Management Limited, Chief Economist of the National Bank of New Zealand, and Board Member of the Financial Markets Authority. His current research focuses on the economics of wellbeing, and on urban economics; he has published also on issues of economic reform, productivity, taxation and monetary economics.

Link to Slides & Notes

Arthur Grimes
Arthur Grimes, for Motu Economic and Public Policy Research. Photo credit: Stephen A’Court. COPYRIGHT ©Stephen A’Court