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New bank partnership offers unique research opportunities in wellbeing and welfare

What can we do to promote wellbeing, welfare, and happiness? Swedbank, the Savings Banks in Sweden, and the Center for Wellbeing, Welfare and Happiness at the Stockholm School of Economics are joining forces to enhance understanding of what builds wellbeing and to establish new, more human perspectives on economics.

Happiness is a key factor for a resilient society and a competitive Sweden — something that is especially important in uncertain times.  For this reason, the Stockholm School of Economics (SSE) recently launched the Center for Wellbeing, Welfare and Happiness, led by renowned researcher and educator Micael Dahlen, who also became the first professor of happiness in Sweden and the world.

The new Center for Wellbeing, Welfare and Happiness at the Stockholm School of Economics brings together world-leading experts and researchers who, along with the government, the business community and society at large, are laying the groundwork for a better future. The goal is to establish Sweden as the foremost knowledge hub focused on promoting wellbeing and and contributing to a healthy and sustainable society.

Unique research

Swedbank, the Savings Banks, and SSE are now initiating a partnership that offers new opportunities for groundbreaking and world-unique research. The agreement stretches over a ten-year period and the aim is to better our understanding of what factors promote wellbeing through life's ups and downs.

"We want to map how both external and internal changes affect an individual’s happiness, wellbeing, and welfare over time. Both changes in the outside world, such as economic fluctuations, pandemics, and geopolitical tensions, and on a personal level, such as changing jobs, moving, or a family member falling ill. This is where banks can provide us with unique insights," says Micael Dahlen.

The initiative is part of a broader educational effort that Swedbank and the Savings Banks have been leading for many years.

"There is a connection between financial health and overall wellbeing. Swedbank works broadly to ensure that more people become financially healthy, with balanced finances and the knowledge needed to feel financially secure and free. Through our involvement, we wish to contribute to the increasing knowledge about what makes us humans feel well," says Tomas Hedberg, Deputy CEO of Swedbank.

Mikael Bohman, Chairman of the Savings Banks, Västra Mälardalen, adds:

"We share SSE’s values and in their goal of creating a healthy society through knowledge. Since its creation in 1820, Sparbankerna have worked to improve life for everyone, through education in personal finance but also by supporting the local community, focusing on children, youths, sports, culture, entrepreneurship, and research. Partnering with the Stockholm School of Economics is perfectly in line with our fundamental idea." 

Since its launch last fall, the Center for Wellbeing, Welfare and Happiness has initiated a number of research projects, initiatives, and collaborations, both on a local and a national level. The research also encompasses the university itself. Starting in August 2024, all new bachelor students will take a crash course in happiness and wellbeing. This course is based on the School’s most popular elective, focused on happiness and wellbeing, taught by professor Micael Dahlen. Student happiness will also be measured during their studies, starting with the crash course. This spring, a project to measure the happiness of the university's alumni was also launched, with the goal of better understanding how career and life choices affect the alumni's perceived sense of wellbeing.

For more information, please contact:

Micael Dahlen 
Professor of Wellbeing, Welfare and Happiness
Center for Wellbeing, Welfare and Happiness, Stockholm School of Economics
Email: micael.dahlen@hhs.se

Ylva Mossing
Content and Media Relations Manager
Stockholm School of Economics
Email: ylva.mossing@hhs.se
Tel: +46-730 97 26 16

Charlotte Nilsson
Press officer
Email: charlotte.nilsson@swedbank.se
Tel: +46-765 34 66 12

Hanne Konradsson
Head of Communications and Marketing
The Savings Banks (Sparbankernas Riksförbund)
Email: hanne.konradsson@sparbankerna.se
Tel: +46-765 41 12 01



SSE CWWH Health Sustainability Economics Happiness Wellbeing News Press release