Capturing VBL in Bhutan

    Project Details


    The project embeded values-based approaches to identifying legacies within the Stories of Amazing Resilience (SOAR) and Gothkad (Happiness) Village projects led by GPIAtlantic and its local partner in Bhutan, the Youth Development Fund (YDF).

    These projects were part of the wider programme of developing Gross National Happiness pioneered in Bhutan. We trained Canadian and Bhutanese youth leaders who were involved in delivering action research projects for community wellbeing, and co-developed an approach to evaluating legacies of projects in Bhutan.

    This project also aimed to use this practical example as a case for the usefulness of the approach in other regions, and to develop a deep, mutual partnership with GPIAtlantic, a global leader in indicators for development. Our community partner also facilitated the transfer of this learning into an established global network of policy-makers, funders and assessors of genuine progress and wellbeing, such as the United Nations and World Bank.

    Key findings

    Follow-on impacts: this project established that the semi-anthropological approach of the WeValue approach being used, could in fact be taken over by trained local non-governmental or social researchers, to be used effectively in completely new cultures and in another language.

    That finding was taken forward even further in later work in 2019 where Brighton researchers developed ways to construct local materials of the WeValue approach in villages in Nigeria and in Botswana.

    These allowed environmental applications to move forward, and enabled deep and meaningful participation of local people, and have been now published in recent papers. Effectively, the understanding of the potential use of the approach as a valid anthropological method has been made clear, and further development of that will continue, with collaborations with Hong Kong University.
    Effective start/end date1/06/1631/05/17


    • Arts and Humanities Research Council


    • WeValue
    • Bhutan
    • Thailand
    • legacies
    • values-based approach
    • shared values
    • Bhutan Gross National Happiness
    • Genuine Progress Indicators


    Explore the research topics touched on by this project. These labels are generated based on the underlying awards/grants. Together they form a unique fingerprint.