Paul Rogers, Planet Happiness, NSW, Australia

Paul Rogers, Planet Happiness, NSW, Australia

Operating globally, Planet Happiness is a tourism and big data project of the Happiness Alliance, a US registered 501(c)3 non-profit. Planet Happiness offers the travel and tourism industry the first framework, acknowledged by the World Economic Forum, the World Travel and Tourism Council, the Global Sustainable Tourism Council and the UN World Tourism Organisation to define, value and measure travel and tourism’s contribution to individual and destination wellbeing (our 2min inclusivity video).

Our mission is to focus the attention of all tourism stakeholders on the wellbeing agenda; and use tourism as a vehicle for development that demonstrably strengthens ​destination sustainability and the quality of life of host communities. Our approach provides a narrative for the industry’s billions of stakeholders, especially governments, host communities and businesses, to (a) comprehend and engage with the happiness, wellbeing and quality of life agenda, and (b) move our measure of progress and development Beyond GDP, with its narrow emphasis upon economic metrics.

The Planet Happiness ten-step approach:

  • defines and measures the wellbeing and quality of life of residents and host communities living in World Heritage sites and other visitor destinations;
  • helps destinations advance their competitive edge through more inclusive, more responsible and more purposeful tourism planning;
  • uses the on-line, state-of-the-art Happiness Index survey that:
    • is based on Bhutan’s pioneering approach to measuring Gross National Happiness;
    • is an OECD recognised and scientifically valid, comprehensive tool providing a direct experience of how wellbeing is measured;
    • is available in 24 languages and counting;
    • enables and assists destinations to measure movement towards the UN SDGs.
The Well-being Pragmatic Shift: 11 Domains of Happiness

The Happiness Index measures individual and destination wellbeing across 11 domains. It includes questions measuring satisfaction with the way tourism is developing, that are centred around the way tourism is included in the UN SDGs.


Each destination receives a unique URL allowing questions to be added to localise the survey.  Questions can be added to engage stakeholders in discussions, steps and decision-making to reduce the destination’s carbon footprint, or focus upon resident-wildlife conflict issues, for example.


Working with our destination partners we analyse data to produce one-page destination scorecards and in-depth data-rich reports, sparking conversations about tourism and destination wellbeing and how this relationship can be measured and strengthened.



In recent years Paul has undertaken assignments for the World Bank, ADB, FAO, DfID, UNDP, UNWTO, USAID ICIMOD, Luxembourg Development, Kew Gardens, Istituto Oikos, SNV (Netherlands Development Organisation) and WWF.   | 

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