Go Back

Photo of John F. Helliwell

John F. Helliwell Economist

John F. Helliwell studies well-being, especially in its social context. His involvement in the editing of the United Nations World Happiness Report has sparked a worldwide discussion on well-being, society, and government policy. His areas of interest include well-being, social capital, applied macroeconomics, international economics, comparative economic growth, and natural resource economics.


Queen's Golden Jubilee Award, Canada, 2003.

Donner Prize, 2002-3.

Officer of the Order of Canada, 1987.

Elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, 1976.

Relevant Publications

J.F. Helliwell, "Social norms, happiness, and the environment: closing the circle," SSPP, vol. 10, no. 1, 2014.


J. F. Helliwell, How Much Do National Borders Matter? Washington: Brookings Institution Press, 2000.

J. F. Helliwell, Globalization and Well-Being, and Well-Being for Public Policy. Vancouver: UBC Press, 2002.



Program Co-Director Social Interactions, Identity & Well Being

Senior Fellow Social Interactions, Identity & Well Being


University of British ColumbiaVancouver School of Economics


PhD Oxford University

MA Oxford University

B.Comm. University of British Columbia



Ideas Related to John F. Helliwell

News | Social Interactions, Identity & Well Being

Akerlof, Helliwell appointed CIFAR Distinguished Fellows

The CIFAR Board of Directors appointed economists George Akerlof and John Helliwell as CIFAR Distinguished Fellows at its meeting June...

News | Social Interactions, Identity & Well Being

Losing sharpens the sting of inequality

“Losses loom larger than gains,” as the saying goes. But a new experiment reveals the psychology behind the expression and...

News | Social Interactions, Identity & Well Being

Fifth World Happiness Report released

The fifth World Happiness Report, edited by John F. Helliwell, co-director of CIFAR’s program in Social Interactions, Identity & Well Being,...

Case Study | Social Interactions, Identity & Well Being

Finding new ways to measure community well-being

CIFAR fellows, advisors and post-docs have helped to assemble a critical mass of research that provides a new way to...

Symposium Debrief | Social Interactions, Identity & Well Being

Evidence to action: inspiring ideas for happier communities

CIFAR researchers and community leaders came together to discuss the latest research in happiness, and how it can be used...