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Paul Dolan - Speaker

Paul Dolan

speaker location icon London, UK

Professor of Behavioural Science at the London School of Economics and Political Science

Internationally renowned expert on happiness, behavioural economics and public policy

Acclaimed author of "Happiness By Design" (2014) & "Happy Ever After:" (2019)

Paul Dolan is a Professor of Behavioural Science at the London School of Economics and Political Science. As an internationally renowned expert on happiness, behaviour and public policy, he conducts original research into the measurement of happiness, its causes and consequences and has over 100 peer-reviewed publications.

In 2010, Paul was seconded to the UK Cabinet Office to embed the ‘Mindspace’ report into policymaking which he co-authored. ‘Mindspace’ is a mnemonic for the nine most robust effects on behaviour that operate largely, but not exclusively, through our
automatic system (the part of our brain that responds unconsciously to contextual influences). His work on Mindspace is being used across the public and private sectors, and he is increasingly asked for consultancy advice on how to change behaviour in organisations and populations. He has previously worked with Nobel Laureate Daniel Kahneman at Princeton University (their 2008 paper in the Economic Journal is the most cited paper in that journal since that year.) and has written questions as a member of the National Wellbeing Advisory Forum for the Office of National Statistics for large scale reports on measuring national wellbeing. Paul regularly advises global corporations in behavioural economics as well as the National Academy of Sciences in the US on measurement issues in happiness research.

In 2002, he was the recipient of a Philip Leverhulme Prize in Economics for his contribution to health economics and quality-adjusted life years. The policy impact of his work in health was recognised more widely by his appointment in 2008 as Chief Academic Advisor to the UK Government Economic Service on Economic appraisal.

 

Our Comment

"Paul is an outstanding speaker and world-leading expert on the science of happiness. His acclaimed book, "Happiness By Design" (Penguin, 2014) argues that pleasure is not the only ingredient of happiness - the amount of purpose we feel in what we do is also crucial. And while standard research into happiness tends to ask whether certain 'inputs' (such as money or being married) make us happy, he argues it's more important to ask how much time our attention is directed at things that make us happy or sad. Paul's pioneering research has led him to work with Nobel Laureate Daniel Kahneman, consult for the British government and advise global corporations on behavioural and happiness issues affecting the productivity of their workforce."


Happy Ever After: Escaping The Myth of The Perfect Life

 

In his new book, Happy Ever After, bestselling happiness expert Professor Paul Dolan draws on a variety of studies covering issues such as wellbeing, inequality and discrimination to bust the common myths about our sources of happiness. He shows that there can be many unexpected paths to lasting fulfilment. Some of these might involve not going into higher education, choosing not to marry, rewarding acts rooted in self-interest and caring a little less about living forever.

By freeing ourselves from the myth of the perfect life, we might each find a life worth living.


Happiness by Design: Finding Pleasure and Purpose in Everyday Life

 

How can we make it easier to be happy? Using the latest cutting-edge research, Professor Paul Dolan reveals that wellbeing isn’t about how we think – it’s about what we do. By making deliberate choices that bring us both pleasure and meaning, we can redesign our lives for maximum happiness – without thinking too hard about it.

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