Social Physics in Action


Social Physics Principles

From the ideas of the MIT Media Lab

The Pillars of Success

The village decides the outcome. The village attracts the members with a connected intention to make the kind of change they know is important.

Trust is built in an environment of diversity through strong social connections and equal speak time and forms the foundations necessary to recruit new members, explore ideas and come to consensus on taking action.

Everyone connected to everyone else within a neighborhood provides the flow of ideas necessary for arriving at practical, creative solutions for obtaining results.

Social incentives are designed to support productive behavior of idea generation, membership growth, and measurable results. Incentives work best when the community benefits more than the individual.

Exploration both inside and outside provides the new ideas for creativity and productivity.

Measurable results provide the reality for transparency and feedback for the village. For example it could be tons of food locally produced … Read the rest

The Happy Community Project Wednesday Feb 22nd


This Wednesday we are getting together at FM 97.5’s cultural center at 11 Glendale Drive Lower Sackville and I am excited to see what happens.

The goal of the Happy Community Project is to create and strengthen social connections by doing things togeher. Happy miracles can happen when we are connected with each other.

I have listened to hundreds of stories people who found themselves by bad luck or bad genes on the road to unhappiness for themselves and those around them. Often these stories involved violence, drugs or desperation. And yet somehow these lucky people managed to escape the path in front of them. The common thread to each of these person’s story is that someone – a friend, a teacher, a neighbor or a stranger – touched them in an act of compassion, and gave them what they needed. They felt valued and that they belonged. Often the person who touched them had no idea of the impact Read the rest

From Idea to Momentum


The Happy Community Project Gains Momentum

In an age of disruption, where are people going to find a happy place? When environmental, economic, social, political or technology disruption visits upon us, how can we roll with the punches and come up smiling. Many people are asking these questions.

The Happy Community Project has gone from an idea into real momentum.

The Happy Community Project comes out of 4 years of intensive research and experiment on how we build the capacity for these kind of communities. The bottom line: When communities are highly socially connected through face to face contact and shared actions, they have the foundation for happiness and resiliency.


That is what is happening in Sackville Nova Scotia. In only two months, they have started to build a solid base of citizens who bring energy, creativity, expertise, experience and leadership. There is a growing momentum of people becoming involved in something that is fun and inspiring and yet … Read the rest

FAQs- The Happy Community Project


What is the Happy Community Project?

Based on research and experience, we have developed process that increases a community’s wellbeing and resiliency. The Happy Community Project provides communities that want to increase their happiness and resiliency with a simple process that brings communities together around common purpose.

Why is the Happy Community Project important?

As we move deeper into the age of disruption, it is the strength and resiliency of our communities that can provide us with the capacity to roll with the punches and come up smiling. The Happy Community Project is designed to increase the capacity of the community for happiness and resiliency.

How does the Happy Community Project work?

We provide a process and the citizens of the community apply the process in whatever way think is best. The process brings out the creativity and energy of a community and focuses it on building the social connections within the community that form the foundation for wellbeing and … Read the rest

The 7 Criteria for a Happy Community Project


What Makes a  Happy Community

The biggest indicator of a happy and resilient community is how strong are the social connections within a community. These are personal connections involving face to face contact. In most communities, you can’t know everyone, but you can know about 100 people really well and recognize several hundred others as being part of the community. When the whole community is connected by at least 2 degrees of separation, the community has the basics of hat it needs for happiness and resiliency.

What are the Happy Community Criteria

In the Happy Community project we create projects that are designed to both benefit the community and build strong social connections.

To accomplish this, the project needs to meet 7 criteria. When all 7 criteria can be checked off, the community has a happy making social connecting project

Project Check List – 7 Criteria


Do a large number of citizens feel strongly about this?

Does this project … Read the rest

Something Magical is Happening in Sackville


The Sackville Happy Communities Project met again last night. (Jan 31 2017) We are now almost 40 members strong of which 12 people rolled up their sleeves and started to define what activities could bring greater happiness and resiliency to the community of Sackville. They divided up into three working groups and here is what they found.

Three Great Ideas


  • Celebrate Sackville by discovering our own unknown wonders inside our community
  • Set up geocaching to explore hidden secrets
  • Create healthy competition between neighborhoods 
  • Include multigenerational
  • Perhaps expand to other celebrations like Winter Carnival


  • We can grow our own food
  • Anybody can grow and anybody can eat
  • Include business like Sobeys to provide resources
  • Inclusive through organic networking where people make small contributions of effort
  • Independent of need for financing 
  • Grassroots and inclusive


  • Based on successful project in East Preston
  • Kids learn to cook
  • Share recipes
  • Share
Read the rest

What Happened on January 11, 2017


jan 2017 Sackville NSWe had an amazing turnout for the first Happy Community Project in Sackville NS.

We have a solid base of approximately 30 people who bring amazing experience, leadership and skills and I am truly honored. And we have the commitment from many to move this forward to its next steps. I am excited to see what comes of this.

But first – here is my take on what happened last night.

  • We affirmed that community happiness is a worthy goal in its own Jan 2017 Deputy Mayor Steve Craigright.
  • We affirmed that happiness in our communities is not to be taken for granted, that it takes deliberate action to build and sustain it.
  • We affirmed that our communities are not broken and don’t need fixing.
  • We also identified several opportunities where we can contribute to building and maintaining happiness in our community (see the attached)
  • We affirmed that building and maintaining happiness involves all citizens, NGO’s, business and governments

And the most exciting part of … Read the rest

New Year Thoughts on Happiness


I have been reading Desmond Tutu’s The Bookwheelchair-familyof Forgiving. It has got me thinking about happiness in the year ahead.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if our communities were more deeply founded on the principle of happiness? Wouldn’t it be wonderful if it was normal to remove the obstacles to happiness?

Who knows what the year ahead brings. Whatever it may be, I know that happiness is what I wish for myself, my family and all the people around me. The happier others are, the happier I will be.

I understand that real happiness always involves relationship. I know that I draw on relationships from others to fuel my sense of joy and wellbeing.  It is where I find love, meaning and validation. The corollary to this is that unhappiness also comes from relationship. This is where I experience hurt, violation and anger. What’s new is how my happiness is affected by the relationships that I don’t pay much … Read the rest

Thinking Differently


System Change examplesIn the last two months I have talked to a large number of Phds.  What I have learned is they are very good at recognizing the problems. When I say we are headed to h… in a hand basket, I get instant agreement. We do not need to spend anytime debating the truth of this statement or their underlying causes.

What I found interesting though is their instant reaction to new ideas on what to do about it.

It seems that their training has taught them that they already know everything there is to know and that if there was another good idea they would already know it. For sure they know a lot and they are experts in their field. What the world needs is new creative thinking that moves us out of our well established patterns of behavior.

We need all brains on deck to approach new ideas with curiosity and creativity It is our collective acceptance that Read the rest