May 2016

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum adopts Smart Dubai Happiness Agenda fuelling the city’s transformation with a globally unique focus on happiness

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, has adopted the Happiness Agenda by Smart Dubai. The Happiness Agenda is a globally unique, science-based approach to measuring and impacting people’s happiness, fuelling the city’s transformation.

Her Highness Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum was also present during the announcement to accept recognition for Dubai Culture as the first Happiness Partner with Smart Dubai to execute the Happiness Agenda. Dubai Culture will support Smart Dubai to leading a culture shift in the city through programs and projects aimed to build awareness and influence individuals, businesses and city leadership to prioritise happiness.

The Happiness Agenda will be led by the Smart Dubai Office. As the entity charged with leading Dubai’s transformation to a smart city, the Smart Dubai Office has been consistently committed to people’s happiness, in support of the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, to make Dubai the happiest city on earth. Using technology innovation, Smart Dubai is working with strategic partners in the public and private sector to enhance experiences for the whole city.

The Happiness Agenda will adopt a globally unique approach to transforming the happiness of the whole city that is firmly rooted in science. The Happiness Agenda expands on traditional approaches to societal well being, introducing a requirement for meeting individuals’ essential daily life needs, to encompass the whole city experience. To achieve happiness at a city level, the Happiness Agenda sets forth a series of programs designed to discover, influence and satisfy individuals’ affective, basic, cognitive and deeper needs — the essential ingredients for happiness.

The Happiness Agenda will pursue a scientific framework to enable the city to: provide opportunities that lead to positive emotions & feelings such as fun, joy, and other hedonistic pleasures; allow people the ability to access services in an easy, efficient, convenient and seamless way; help people achieve a high sense of well-being and satisfaction with their lives; support people in engaging and meaningful activities that maximise their sense of purpose and pleasure.

The Happiness Agenda will begin with an in-depth and collaborative discovery process within the context of Dubai’s unique and diverse cultural climate. The discovery phase will culminate in a deep understanding of individuals’ basic and higher needs in Dubai; a formal definition of happiness for the city; and a cultural baseline for happiness.

Measurement is essential to the success of the Happiness Agenda. Through the Happiness Agenda, Smart Dubai will research, formulate and implement a citywide happiness index and a predictive happiness impact score. The Happiness Agenda aims to deliver deep, live and target-driven measurement of satisfaction and happiness levels across the city.

Leading change at the city level, the Happiness Agenda will create and influence policies and approaches to focus the city, and people, on happiness. These evidence-based policies and frameworks will enable city leaders, managers and innovators in the public and private sector to actively influence the happiness of individuals living and working in Dubai.

Supported by sustained discovery and measurement activities, the Happiness Agenda will introduce a Happiness Experience framework for unified city leadership planning using happiness impact forecasting. In the future, city leaders will be able to plan and prioritise new initiatives based on scientifically sound projections of the future happiness of Dubai residents and visitors.

The Happiness Agenda will also implement a series of educational programs, publications and events to build awareness, teach self reflection and influence the city to prioritise happiness. The Happiness Agenda will build and run training and mentorship programs; engage with community organisations and events and create and disseminate content establishing Dubai as a global thought leader on transforming happiness at the city level.

The Happiness Agenda guides and supports Smart Dubai’s City Transformation Agenda, delivering measurable financial and resource impact and improving experiences for all customers. Emphasising people’s happiness at the core of all decision making, the Happiness Agenda will ensure the maximum impact from all smart initiatives and services for the city, in line with the mission of Smart Dubai.

The Happiness Agenda follows an internationally benchmarked change agenda framework, identifying 16 programs in 4 strategic portfolios - Discover, Measure, Change and Educate - to create and sustain transformative change in citywide happiness for Dubai.

In line with the Happiness Agenda, Smart Dubai also announced the opening of the Happiness Meter to the private sector, measuring customer satisfaction at service interaction touchpoints throughout the city.

Already in use by 38 government entities at customer service centres; websites; and online transaction points, the Happiness Meter has collected over 2 million votes and has recorded an overall happiness index of 87% in 2015.

Using data from the Happiness Meter Dashboard, service providers are able to monitor customer satisfaction in real-time, enabling targeted interventions to increase satisfaction and improve happiness overall.

By leveraging the latest in technology innovation and customer experience design, together with a culturally-aligned science-based approach to impacting people’s happiness, Smart Dubai is uniting two powerful forces for city transformation today, towards making Dubai the happiest city on earth.