IIT Kharagpur to set up lab worth $1 mn to achieve happiness through science
Socrates said that happiness can be “achieved” by human effort. Now, India’s oldest IIT (Kharagpur) is in pursuit of cracking the happiness code. Through the ‘Rekhi Centre for Science of Happiness’, named after its alumnus Satinder Singh Rekhi, it aims to promote “happiness and positive psychology” among its students. One can also do a certificate course here.
“The upcoming centre is a unique initiative that will research and help develop an ecosystem of happy and successful KGPians who become effective leaders, innovative engineers, caring employers, smarter and creative employees,” Satinder Singh told The Times Of India.
Happiness will expand from the KGPians to the people they interact with, hence improving society, Satinder Singh said. It was a conversation with IIT-Kgp director Partha Pratim Chakrabarti that inspired Satinder Singh to “assess and improve students’ sense of happiness”. “This led to the idea of setting up a dedicated centre to promote science of happiness,” said the IIT-Kgp Director.
“Research is needed to truly understand the underlying facets of this multidimensional domain through a convergence of psychologists, neuroscientists, cognitive scientists, management experts, sociologists, humanities scholars, engineers who measure various kinds of human signals as well as academics who wish to develop this into a holistic learning framework.”
In addition to sponsoring the centre, Satinder Singh will be its chairman. It will cost $1 million to set up the centre over a period of three years. The space for the centre has been marked out and construction will start soon, some sources said. The first international workshop on the ‘Science of Happiness’ could be held in August 2016. The centre will pursue its goals through courses, research and ground activities on and off campus.