Posted by: Steve Coplan | July 14, 2006

The happy planet index

I like the idea in principle, but in practice it seems kind of absurd. The happy planet index is calculated as follows:

The HPI incorporates three separate indicators: ecological footprint, life-satisfaction and life expectancy. The statistical calculations that underlie the HPI are quite complex. However conceptually, it is straight forward and intuitive:


Life satisfaction x Life expectancy

Ecological Footprint

Using this index, the UK ends up between Libya and Laos, and the US between Lithuiania and Cote D’Ivoire. Hmmm.
The BBC’s take is not surprisingly sympathetic to the findings.



  1. Vanautu is #1. Maybe that’s why Survivor is going there

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