What’s happiness got to do with it? Wellbeing and sustainable development policy in Greater Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
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Planners often invoke wellbeing, sustainability, and related concepts when discussing planning initiatives, all of which are contested within their own separate literatures. Some of these planners, however, have begun drawing connections between the disciplines, a connection that very few in the planning academic literature are recognizing and studying. Using the Greater Victoria Happiness Index Partnership (HIP) in British Columbia as its primary case study, this thesis draws upon HIP’s experience in creating regional wellbeing indicators to better understand this relationship. It will investigate the efficacy of their efforts in affecting regional policy, explore their as well as the academic understandings of the wellbeing/sustainable development relationship, and draw recommendations that ultimately suggest a new means of applying this relationship in planning and other realms of public policy.