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Global Flourishing Study Promotes Open Access Data

November 18th, 2022,
Image with quote form Huajin Wang: We are thrilled to support the project team in making the data open access and ensuring equitable access to this information. By facilitating researchers world-wide to apply rigor and transparency in data analysis, we hope to help unleash the huge potential embedded in this rich data.

What does it mean to live well? What makes people happy? These are just a few of the questions the Global Flourishing Study plans to examine across 22 geographically and culturally diverse countries.

The Global Flourishing Study is a longitudinal data collection and research collaboration between scholars at Baylor University and Harvard University, in partnership with Gallup and the Center for Open Science (COS), and with the support of a consortium of funders. As part of this project, COS will make the data from the study an open access resource so researchers, journalists, policymakers, and educators worldwide can access detailed information about what makes for a flourishing life.

“We are thrilled to support the project team in making the data open access and ensuring equitable access to this information. By facilitating researchers world-wide to apply rigor and transparency in data analysis, we hope to help unleash the huge potential embedded in this rich data,” said Huajin Wang, COS’s Director of Programs.

Data will be made publicly accessible via the Open Science Framework (OSF). Anyone can access the data immediately upon release for specific analysis purposes by submitting a preregistration of the proposed research to COS. Such preregistration improves credibility of analyses and helps avoid arbitrary data-fishing, especially in early stages of the use of the data. The data will, however, ultimately be made fully open access, without any restrictions on use, one year following each wave of subsequent data collection. The hope is that by making the GFS data an open access resource, we will empower research on well-being all over the globe.

Six key domains previously documented by extensive empirical research that are related to human flourishing will be assessed:

  • Mental and physical health
  • Happiness and life satisfaction
  • Meaning and purpose
  • Character and virtue
  • Close social relationships
  • Financial and material stability

In a recent article in Psychology Today, project co-director Tyler J. VanderWeele discusses work that has been done to date to explore human flourishing, including a recent paper looking at a more nuanced assessment of different aspects of flourishing around the world. In the article, VanderWeele notes that the Global Flourishing Study will help improve flourishing assessments by providing a better sense of which patterns persist when using well-being questions more fine-tuned to the various flourishing domains.

Funders for the study include the John Templeton Foundation, Templeton Religion Trust, Templeton World Charity Foundation, Well-Being for Planet Earth, Fetzer Institute, Well Being Trust, Paul L. Foster Family Foundation, and the David & Carol Myers Foundation.


To learn more about the Global Flourishing Project, sign up for COS’s updates or contact GlobalFlourishing@cos.io.

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