UAE: Emiratis are happiest when parents are happy, study finds

In contrast to the West, the study says Emiratis find true happiness when they care for others

By SM Ayaz Zakir

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Published: Sun 20 Mar 2022, 4:25 PM

Last updated: Sun 20 Mar 2022, 10:33 PM

For Emiratis, true happiness is defined by their bond with their parents and caring for others, a study has found.

The results of the study by Dr Louise Lambert, director of the Happiness and Well-Being Programme and Head of Happiness Research and Policy Design at, were revealed during a special event to mark the International Day of Happiness at Expo 2020 Dubai.

Dr Lambert noted that the results of the study conducted on Emiratis differed from the West and the rest of the world.

"True happiness for (Emiratis) is their parents' happiness," she said.

Referring to the West, Dr Lambert said people there have a different perspective on mental peace and well-being. "In the West, people yearn for happiness through various means. But in this part of the world, true happiness is obtained by providing for and helping others," she added.

During the event, Hessa bint Essa Buhumaid, UAE Minister of Community Development, launched the second edition of the National Well-Being Survey.

The survey is part of the national well-being monitoring initiatives and implemented by the National Programme for Happiness and Well-Being. The study aims to measure the well-being of UAE community members every two years.

Buhumaid expressed her joy and congratulated the authorities and residents on advancing three positions in the Global Happiness Index 2022.

“Our happiness index is high, and we are improving in its ranking. Thank God!” she said. “Collectively, with very strong and steady steps, we will surely be there."

Buhumaid also stressed that the UAE leadership strived to achieve and embody happiness and well-being on the ground.

"While we speak about the UAE efforts to make a better well-being for its nation, we cannot forget the reality and priority of its work in the field of well-being globally," she said.


She also highlighted the famous quote by the late His Highness Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the UAE's Founding Father: "My wealth is the happiness of my people." The UAE's approach to caring for its people is a reflection of those words, Buhumaid added.

"The saying expressed briefly and sincerely his vision to build his nation and make his Emirati citizens and residents happy," she said. "Sheikh Zayed wanted the UAE to be an oasis of happiness, prosperity, security, safety and tolerance."

Buhumaid concluded by saying well-being is an everyday responsibility. “Well-being reflects societies and creates a beautiful reality and future filled with hope and optimism towards sustainable, happier and more giving societies,” she said.

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