Gabrielle Kelly urges governments to build on findings to implement happiness programs
Dubai-UAE: 11 February, 2018 – At a societal level it is important to create systems that use positive psychology to enhance wellbeing and resilience and reduce mental illness, said Gabrielle Kelly, Director of the Wellbeing and Resilience Centre at the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI). Her comments came during a session titled ‘Building Wellbeing at Scale’ during the Global Dialogue for Happiness currently underway in Dubai.
Kelly said the lessons from the wellbeing program in her home state offers a benchmark for governments worldwide. “We’re building a state of wellbeing in South Australia,” she said. “Let’s do it together and pool our research efforts.”
She said that for such programs to succeed, they require not only a solid plan but, more crucially, the will to implement it. “Don’t just measure, build as well,” she said.
She pointed out that South Australia’s program has shown positive results in several settings, including prisons and automotive factories.
Kelly’s talk was one among several sessions built around the theme ‘How Governments Can Design for Happiness & Wellbeing’. Gabrielle Kelly was Senior Vice President of the New York-based startup Health Accord, where she developed health and wellbeing products to self-directed consumers, before being appointed as Director of the Adelaide Thinkers in Residence program in Australia. Her work at 'Thinkers' laid the groundwork for what was to become the SAHMRI Wellbeing and Resilience Centre.