Having previously worked with international research institutes, and senior policymakers in the climate change space, what intrigued me was whether studies, research and global conventions were contributing to impact on the ground. Innumerable government level meetings are held every year across continents attended by large groups of leaders and policymakers. Have we really seen the impact of these discussions? Several flip-flops among countries on the issue of climate change have seen these discussions go nowhere. This often made me wonder whether real change would come through government policies, or unilateral actions taken by citizens driven by the realization of a bleak future.
The level of awareness among citizens obviously differs across world regions. But what’s been reassuring is the penetration of technology and favorable demographics coming together. Even the remotest parts of a country like India are today connected through mobile networks. India’s demographic dividend, as policymakers and economists like to address the favorable working age ratio in India’s population (about 65 percent of the population is in the working age group of 15-64), provides huge opportunities for economic growth. Also according to a report by Deloitte India, titled “Trend-setting millennials: Redefining the consumer story”, millennials (in the age group of 18-35), also known as Generation Y, are the chief wage earners in India with a 47 percent share in the working age population.
This section of the population today has access to information at their fingertips. They are more aware of issues around them, be it political, social, economic, or environmental, mostly in this very order. Social and environmental awareness driving action is currently limited to urban areas while awareness as such is more widespread.
The last few years have also seen a rapid growth in polarization of world opinion on several issues. There has been no dearth of negative news on media networks, and some of them have been outright vitriolic.
However, even in the middle of such a macro environment, citizens worldwide have been trying to drive positive change and happiness. These include both young and old, as we’ve seen from school children in Australia to innumerable initiatives, big and small worldwide. Some of the initiatives get visibility while most get drowned in the noise around us. There are several social media channels used globally to provide visibility for such actions. But most do not cater exclusively to them nor are they designed to keep the movement going. To address this, emerged a thought of creating a platform–“Happystry.” A platform that brings change makers, big and small together, and facilitates interactions through sharing knowledge, ideas, joy, happiness and exchanging responsible products and services. Responsible products are defined widely as those that contribute to social and environmental development.
Happystry not only brings citizens together, but also other stakeholders who add impetus to change. These include NGOs, Corporates, and Social Entrepreneurs. Each stakeholder plays an important role in the ecosystem.
Happystry provides a platform for sharing knowledge, ideas, actions, and also selling responsible products and services. The platform is catalyzed by a digital token on blockchain called Dlites, earned through contributing to social sector knowledge and engaging in responsible commerce. These tokens can be redeemed both online and offline for responsible goods and services. Dlites can be viewed as a reward for contributing to positive change.
Given the diversity of participants on the platform, such an incentive mechanism we believe would help in accelerating interactions within the community.
Launched in November 2018, Happystry envisions to build a community based on trust, sharing, caring and “Happy”ness, with everyone “Dlited” to be a part of it. Learn more about Happystry at https://www.happystry.com.
Rajesh Nair is the Founder, CEO of Happystry. Prior to Happystry he has worked extensively in the area of energy analytics as a researcher, consultant and an entrepreneur. He has publications in peer-reviewed journals and has also co-authored a book on Economics, Energy, and Environment linkages. He has a PhD in Public Policy from IIM Ahmedabad.