Book | 2013

Happy Money: The Science of Smarter Spending

by Elizabeth Dunn and Michael Norton

Abstract

If you think money can't buy happiness, you're not spending it right. Two rising stars in behavioral science explain how money can buy happiness—if you follow five core principles of smarter spending. Happy Money offers a tour of new research on the science of spending. Most people recognize that they need professional advice on how to earn, save, and invest their money. When it comes to spending that money, most people just follow their intuitions. But scientific research shows that those intuitions are often wrong.
Happy Money explains why you can get more happiness for your money by following five principles, from choosing experiences over stuff to spending money on others. And the five principles can be used not only by individuals, but by companies seeking to create happier employees and provide "happier products" to their customers. Dunn and Norton show how companies from Google to Pepsi to Charmin have put these ideas into action. Along the way, the authors describe new research that reveals luxury cars often provide no more pleasure than economy models, that commercials can enhance the enjoyment of watching television, and that residents of many cities frequently miss out on inexpensive pleasures in their hometowns. By the end of this book, readers will ask themselves one simple question whenever they reach for their wallets: Am I getting the biggest happiness bang for my buck?

Keywords: Happiness; Spending;

Citation:

Dunn, Elizabeth, and Michael Norton. Happy Money: The Science of Smarter Spending. Simon & Schuster, 2013.