Philosopher Awarded $5.1 Million for Study of Happiness


Philosopher Daniel Haybron (St. Louis University) has won a $5.1 million for a three year project on happiness and well-being. Most of that funding—$4.6 million— is coming from the John Templeton Foundation, with the remaining $453,000 coming from St. Louis University. From a press release from SLU:

Titled Happiness and Well-Being: Integrating Research Across the Disciplines, the project will promote dialogue and collaboration among well-being researchers across a wide range of disciplines, including the sciences, philosophy, and theology and religious studies. Advising Haybron on the project will be a board of 14 leading well-being researchers, including some of the best-known figures in the field such as Ed Diener and Martin Seligman. Senior advisers for the project include Diener (science), Valerie Tiberius (philosophy), and Ellen Charry (theology and religious studies).

“Well-being research has become a huge field in recent years, and is having a growing impact on policy and people’s lives. But the sciences and humanities still tend to run on separate tracks, and could learn a great deal from each other,” said Haybron. “This is a very exciting opportunity to gather some of our best minds to think about how scientific work on well-being can be enriched by deeper engagement with philosophical and religious thought. And just as important, how philosophical and religious thought can profit from conversation with the sciences.”

One key innovation of the project is a requirement that all scientific studies funded by the project will include at least one philosopher, theologian or religious studies scholar.

You can learn more about the project at its website.

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PeterJ
5 years ago

What a strange world we live in. Sometimes it seems to make no sense at all.Report

Jennifer Frey
Jennifer Frey
5 years ago

Congrats to Dan Haybron and SLU philosophy! This looks like a very exciting research project.Report

David Wallace
David Wallace
5 years ago

Two important data points in this project is (i) how much being given a grant of $5.1 million for a study of happiness improves one’s own happiness, and (ii) how much working on a multi-year project on happiness improves one’s own happiness. Unfortunately, the current setup mixes these two causal features together: there is a need for a control group who receive a grant of $5.1 million but don’t get to use it to study happiness. I’d like to volunteer for that control group.Report

Tom
Tom
5 years ago

Peter, assuming you mean it’s strange for people to fund work on happiness, then the world is strange because of people with your (strange) view.Report