The International Economics of Happiness Conference – previously held in Australia, the USA, South Korea, India, Italy and Japan – has settled on Bristol for its appearance in October 2018 to coincide with the arrival of the Global Parliament of Mayors.
Visiting Mayors will be hard pushed to find something better than this conference as a springboard for discussions about the power of cities to drive change. Local Futures and Happy City present visionary and innovative approaches to the problems of economic failure, and are a highly magnetic draw for strategists and activists from all sectors alike.
‘We are so excited about this opportunity in Bristol,’ says organiser Helena Norberg-Hodge, who is a pioneer of the new economy movement and recipient of The Alternative Nobel prize. ‘We’ve seen time and again how the conference can have a big influence. The feedback coming back from delegates is all about how these events provide the missing link between thinking and action: translating the inspiration they find into workable local solutions, an alchemy of real change. From Japan to New Mexico to South Korea, from urban agriculture to organic farming to community building, each event has been a wellspring of creative action and deep rooted change.’
Mike Zeidler of Happy City shares Helena’s enthusiasm. ‘We come at the same global problems from different but highly complementary directions. We first teamed up with Local Futures in 2011 to promote Helena’s Economics of Happiness film, when our Thriving Places Index was still just an idea in development,’ he said, ‘so it’s great to get back together now we’ve also got something substantial to offer, and it was a delight to be asked to co-host their 19th International conference.’
The conference will improve understanding and action that promotes:
- Shifts in the economic system to support human and planetary wellbeing
- Understanding of the role of cities and ‘place’ in promoting these shifts
- Practical, localised responses for high value, high impact tangible returns
- Interest among new audiences, inspiring them to engage in action.
You don’t need to be actively involved in localisation or community action to take part in the conference. The Economics of Happiness is as much about sharing and listening to ideas and gaining knowledge as it is about creating immediate change. All that is required is an open mind, a curiosity about solutions to some of our longstanding global challenges and a few hours to spare! Grab your earlybird tickets here – you might just find the inspiration you’ve been looking for.