New Data shows Donald Trump’s election win was the most miserable day in UK in over 6 years
As the inauguration of Donald Trump takes place this week, new research from University of Sussex economist, Dr MacKerron, has uncovered that Trump’s win had a staggering effect across the pond. His analysis revealed that 9th November 2016 - the day Donald Trump was elected - was the unhappiest day of the year. In fact, it wasn’t just the unhappiest day of 2016, it was the UK’s most miserable day in over 6 years.
In fact, it wasn’t just the unhappiest day of 2016, it was the UK’s most miserable day in over 6 years. “We used the Mappiness database from my research at LSE - 3.5 million responses contributed by 65,000. UK users - to calculate the mean happiness levels of our users every day since August 2010. In almost six and a half years, there has been no day more miserable than Wednesday 9 November, the day the US election was called for Donald Trump”, Dr MacKerron said.
At only 57.7% happy, Trump’s election victory was more thoroughly depressing than the gales, oods and power cuts of Storm Imogen (Monday 8 February 2016, 57.9% happy, rank #2). It was also worse than news of the UK’s decision to leave the EU (Fri- day 24 June 2016, 59.2% happy, rank #4).
While the most miserable day was the day Trump was elected, the study also uncovered that our most miserable activity was being at work, second only to being ill!
As a result, Dr MacKerron and Nick Begley, previous Head of Research at mindfulness company Headspace, have teamed up and created Psychological Technologies (PSYT Ltd.) a social impact company dedicated to better measure and help improve people’s psychological wellbeing.
They will shortly be releasing a successor app to Mappiness, called me@life. Nick says “We’re launching the app to help individuals gain insights into the factors that most impact their own wellbeing. At the same time, users will also be contributing invaluable data to help us understand how we can create better workplaces more conducive to our collective wellbeing.”
Ahead of the me@life launch, PSYT today reveal a teaser, in their innovative mindfulness tool – Rebalance with Mindfulness. The app is designed to make mindfulness accessible to everyone though a simple, visual and interactive process. Available for free, more details are available at:
Notes for Editors
- The happiest day over the full period of the Mappiness study to date was Christmas Day 2010 (75.7% happy), followed by Christmas Day 2011 (74.2% happy).
- Blue Monday has been comprehensively debunked (Ben Goldacre, “Blue Monday” is churnalism, beware any journalist who push it — https://goo.gl/CniKGV
- Academic research using the Mappiness data is ongoing. Published papers quantify positive links between happiness (in the moment) and green spaces, positive links between happiness and alcohol consumption, and a negative association between happiness and all aspects of work (original papers at https://goo.gl/uiOY6Z.
- The Brexit referendum result was, by de nition, the preferred result for a majority of referendum voters - so why the negative association with average happiness? First, the negative effect of the result on the average remain voter was probably greater than its positive effect on the average leave voter. Second, Mappiness users and referendum voters are likely distinct, though overlapping, subgroups of the population.
- Psychological Technologies (PSYT Ltd) was co-founded by George MacKerron, creator of Mappiness, and Nick Begley, formerly Head of Research for mindfulness app Headspace. PSYT’s mission is to develop technology that helps people live good lives by enabling them to better understand and take care of themselves and others.
George is CTO and co-founder of PSYT. He created and directs Mappiness research — the largest experience sampling study ever conducted — and is an expert in behavioural economics and subjective wellbeing. George studied at King’s College, Cambridge and Imperial College London. He completed his doctorate at LSE, and he lectures at the University of Sussex and UCL. George is a world leader in experience sampling using mobile technology. His research has been published in top journals and featured on TV and radio across the globe.
Nick Begley is CEO and co-founder of PSYT. Nick read physics at University College London, then qualified as an actuary and worked in the City of London for 9 years before taking part in the world’s largest research study into mindfulness, the Shamatha project. He meditated 8 hours a day for 3 months in silence, while researchers from the University of California Davis examined the impact. He found the experience so beneficial he left his career in finance and retrained in psychology, researching the neuroscience of mindfulness at UCL and the Institute of Psychiatry, and helped start up mindfulness company Headspace as Head of Research before founding PSYT.