Why is happiness so important to Smartcitti?
How we're shaping your future
3 Jun 2021
Why is happiness so important to SmartCitti?
Think of the days of your life you have enjoyed the most and it’s extremely likely you were happy on those days, rather than sad.
At SmartCitti, we are passionate about building and continually perfecting technology that can objectively enhance happiness for individuals. We believe technology can play a role in helping people recognize, celebrate, and share happiness with friends and family. We know from our in-depth studies that sharing happiness is especially important for building and strengthening communities.
Americans are reporting record-low levels of unhappiness. Only 14% of people surveyed this year by NORC at the University of Chicago reported that they were very happy.
This is a 17% fall from 2018, and the lowest number ever since the survey started in 1972. Before this year’s survey, the number had never dropped below 29%.
Interestingly, 80% of survey respondents said they are satisfied with their family’s current financial situation, confirming money doesn’t buy happiness.
SmartCitti’s mission is to help improve happiness and we aim to do this by understanding and contributing to people’s happiness at home, while socializing and in the workplace.
We want to help people find and take advantage of the things that make them happy.
How does happiness change our lives for the better?
Happiness impacts almost every aspect of our lives, having a tangible knock-on effect on everything it touches. It changes how we perceive our lives, how we socialize and interact, and how we treat the environment. Happiness has been proven to improve our health and our careers.
Scientists have shown that happiness boosts our performance, health, relationships and more. A review of almost two hundred studies found overwhelmingly that happy individuals live for longer and are generally far healthier than their unhappy counterparts.
Happiness is a key driver for success. The happiness and wellbeing of individuals benefits society.
The world has become substantially richer but not happier in recent years. Success and money are not the keys to happiness, the opposite is true. We have reached the point where stress is behind our greatest health and social challenges, causing more of the suffering in our society than either unemployment or poverty. Doctors frequently report that almost every illness they treat in their offices can be traced back to having its roots in stress. And stressed-out people aren’t usually happy.
Happiness does matter – the scientific evidence is compelling
The pursuit of happiness is not a luxury; it’s about helping people to live better lives and creating a society that is more productive, healthy, and inclusive.
SmartCitti’s Architect of Happiness Dr Mo Al-Husban says happiness is more complicated than we think and involves many ongoing internal and external factors rather than just being about just one thing.
“I study happiness from an ecological and a constructivist perspective,” Mo explains. “It is not one single thing that we can initiate, construct, and experience.”
The ecological perspective, which views happiness as the result of external factors, is an objective view of happiness, while the constructivist perspective is a subjective view of happiness.
The ecological perspective of happiness
“Ecological happiness exists outside the individual,” Mo explains. “It’s happiness that’s linked to events beyond our control.”
These outside events contribute to either greater or lesser happiness for the individual.
Mo says: “This can include things like reports on the news, or a social media post you’ve seen. They can really change your entire day. A negative news report can make you feel stressed and worried, or reading a social media post might make you happy, or angry and sad.”
The constructivist perspective of happiness
“Our attitudes to life and other people are built-up through the years as we grow and mature,” Mo explains. “They are rooted in your beliefs about things like the reason why we are here, and your purpose in life. Self-actualization forms the constructivist view of happiness.”
From the constructivist view, happiness is how you perceive your life and your world.
How is SmartCitti boosting people’s happiness?
Happiness is a catalyst for meaningful social interactions, good performance at work, and community building. So, whatever can influence our happiness can directly and indirectly influence many other things in our own lives and in the lives of those around us.
“SmartCitti is more than an app or a website,” Mo says. “We think of ourselves as a community that uses advanced technologies to enhance happiness.”
Tracking your day to day happiness makes you more aware of what makes you and your inner circle happy. SmartCitti’s clever app helps you do exactly that.
Inside SmartCitti’s three main pillars. Happier, Safer and Smarter
SmartCitti’s unique selling point is that we can contribute to your happiness by understanding what makes you happy and then providing real-time insights that can enhance your happiness such as where to go and what to do based on location-specific information.
If a certain feature is not yet available in your area, keep checking back as it will be available soon.
We can find you better, cheaper insurance coverage with more benefits that your current insurance provider offers, giving you more ways to feel happier, safer and smarter.
The three core pillars of SmartCitti are Happier, Safer and Smarter
Everything happens in a time and place, including happiness. What the SmartCitti app does is try to understand happiness within a geospatial context.
In the digital twin of your real-life world simulated within the SmartCitti app, users can leave public and private reviews of anything within the community. It could be a car, a restaurant, or store. Users can rate anything they want and share their ratings with their community.
“I discovered SmartCitti when I went on vacation to visit my brother,” says Natalie White. “It was brilliant. I was able to download the app and look up places that locals loved going to and had marked as their happiest places. It was so much easier than trying to gather information from all over the internet. My brother discovered some new places that he loved and still goes to now with his wife and kids.”
SmartCitti’s app is a happiness network designed to identify different levels and types of support within the community and aggregate this information for community access in one single place in real time.
“Users don’t have to go to different forums, blogs, and websites as all the information they need is in one place,” Dr Mo Al-Husban says. “The information is highly localized in a geospatial way. You look on the map and you see exactly who is nearby, who can provide you with help, or who you want to connect with.”
At a very fundamental level, we recognize that safety is necessary for happiness. The SmartCitti app is built to always ensure the safety of users. Risk and security assessments have been prioritized within the emotional review feature.
Our app tracks your driving, you can check trip reports and get tips to drive more safely.
And our app has an option for you to alert your circle of friends should you feel as though you’re in danger, or your loved ones can send an alert to you.
We are continually testing and adding new features, based on what we have learned.
For the third pillar, ‘Smarter’, we are developing multiple use cases with the goal of making daily life as frictionless and stress-free as possible. We are looking at ways of enhancing how we shop, how we drive, and how we communicate using smart technologies in new and innovative ways.
SmartCitti’s soon-to-be-released ‘smart shopper’ feature provides tools for internal navigation, planning and virtual shopping all in one place. It is designed to help people shop conveniently and safely at malls.
Smart Shopper also has AR and VR capabilities which lets users interact with a shop without touching anything at all.
SmartCitti insurance: Happier, Safer and Smarter
SmartCitti’s insurance encompasses all three pillars. People can come to the website and get a fast, free insurance quote online at the touch of a button. Browse and compare quotes from different insurance carriers. We’ll find you the best coverage for home, renters, and auto insurance all under one umbrella.
We believe that knowing you and your loved ones are safe and fully covered helps protect people’s happiness. They can relax and focus on doing more of the things they love.
How SmartCitti is building happiness
Have you ever discovered a new place you love but then forgotten all about it?
SmartCitti’s app allows users to rate how happy they were at places they have visited so they have an accurate log of where they have been and how much they enjoyed being there.
You can check out the places people in your local community have been to and see where they were happiest.
The global leaders calling for a change in wellbeing and happiness policies
SmartCitti has been focused on making a tangible change in community and individual happiness for over five years.
After decades of pushing people to go out and earn more, leaders and policymakers are now also calling for measures of progress to be based on human wellbeing and happiness, instead of money and power.
Just last month, governments and health leaders from across the globe published an open letter calling for global action to improve wellbeing for adolescents so they inherit a happier future. It was jointly written by government representatives in Africa, the Americas, Asia, and Europe as well as organizations including the World Health Organization, the United Nations, the Partnership for Maternal, Newborn, and Child Health, and leading youth-led organizations.
The letter was published by The BMJ on April 1st, with the leaders warning that 1.2 billion people aged 10-19 worldwide risk inheriting an unhappy world, blighted by climate change and the global pandemic.
These leaders called for a new agreed definition and conceptual framework for adolescent wellbeing to inform policymaking.
They said this should include good health and optimum nutrition; connectedness, positive values, and contribution to society; safety and a supportive environment; learning, competence, education, skills, and employability; and agency and resilience.
They wrote: “We invite everyone—decision makers, policy makers, civil society, service providers, educators, donors, innovators, and, most importantly, adolescents themselves—to support this call to action.
“Together, we can ensure that it results in concrete policies, integrated programs, and sustained investments for adolescent wellbeing.”
The leaders added: “Adolescents, youth, and youth led organizations are at the heart of this initiative and will continue to be so. But we all have a part to play in achieving these goals if we are to deliver a more equitable and inclusive world for this and future generations.”
SmartCitti welcomes this proposed change to our policies and aims to continue building happiness for everyone of all ages and backgrounds.