In recent years, governments of several OECD countries including Japan have shown a heightened interest in gauging the happiness of their people. Previous research has shown that material and structural conditions as well as their subjective perception have an impact on the degree of happiness in and across populations. Many studies acknowledge cross-cultural variability, but the most prominent academic fields in happiness research, psychology and economics, are not fully capable of coming to terms with the dispositions and patterns of happiness in society. We propose that anthropology and sociology with their respective methodologies, both quantitative and qualitative, and heuristic assumptions are better equipped to explore the multidimensionality of happiness and well-being. For the purpose of deciphering 'The Social DNA of Happiness in Japan', well-known Japan specialists will look at happiness and well-being with an eye to the shaping impacts of social institutions and socio-cultural values. By covering specific social groups, speakers will demonstrate how life stages and life events have a distinctive impact on their states and expressions of well-being in contemporary Japan.
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