Category Archives: Science

Do lockdowns work in Europe?

Let us divide the countries in Europe that have at least 1 million inhabitants into three groups: the ones that had high movement restrictions in 2020, the ones with almost no restrictions, and the ones in between. The graph below … Continue reading

Posted in Coronavirus crisis, Dance, Death and taxes, Health, Medical, regulation, Science, Social | 17 Comments

Pragmatic utilitarianism?

I have been a utilitarian for about 30 years now and am seen in my academic work as an extreme version of the genre. I did my Phd on the topic. I do not merely say that governments should make … Continue reading

Posted in Cultural Critique, Dance, Death and taxes, Democracy, Economics and public policy, Ethics, Geeky Musings, History, Humour, Life, Parenting, Personal, Philosophy, Religion, Science, Social, Social Policy, Society | 13 Comments

Book Launch of the Handbook for Wellbeing Policy-Making July 1st

Wellbeing & Policy Making Book Launch Event on 1st July 5-6.30pm London Time. Attending the Launch is Free, the book is not! [blurb from Nancy Hey, director of the WW Centre for Wellbeing]: The What Works Centre for Wellbeing, and our … Continue reading

Posted in Death and taxes, Democracy, Economics and public policy, Health, History, Life, Philosophy, Political theory, Politics - international, Politics - national, Public and Private Goods, Science, Social, Social Policy, Society, Theatre | Leave a comment

What has the pandemic told us about wellbeing?

Wellbeing science has behaved very honourably during this pandemic in my opinion, particularly in the UK, where many of the best-known wellbeing researchers openly pointed to the disproportionate costs of lockdowns compared to their (dubious) benefits. Many stood up in … Continue reading

Posted in Coronavirus crisis, History, Science, Social, Social Policy, Society | 14 Comments

We are seven

Following a recent online conversation with Timothy Wilcox, I read Wordsworth’s extraordinary poem “We are seven” which I reproduce below. As you’ll see, it chimes with my own preoccupation with communication and mutual benefit across the chasm of difference. My … Continue reading

Posted in Cultural Critique, Economics and public policy, History, Isegoria, Philosophy, Science | 2 Comments

Peace, food prices, (hunger?) deaths and inequality

Now and then one should look up and see if there are any trends that are not usually talked about in the media but that say something big about how humanity is going. I here want to briefly discuss the … Continue reading

Posted in Death and taxes, Health, Inequality, Life, Politics - international, Science, Social, Society | 14 Comments

Vale Ed Diener, Mr Happiness

Ed Diener, one of the best-known scholars of happiness died this week at the age of 76. He was known as Dr Happiness in the United States, well-known for his 7-item scale on wellbeing and his constant refrain that the … Continue reading

Posted in Dance, Death and taxes, Life, Science | 4 Comments