Submitted on Friday, 3/20/2020, at 1:57 PM

It might seem odd to some that 2020 World Happiness Report, an annual survey of how satisfied people worldwide are with their lives, is coming out in the midst of a pandemic, but that’s exactly the point, Catherine Sanderson, Amherst’s Manwell Family Professor of Life Sciences, told The New York Times.

“Perhaps the most important thing about this report is that it says we should care about happiness,” she said, “that this is something we should measure.”

She said the report “is a call to American institutions to study happiness the way they analyze SAT scores, obesity rates and the gross domestic product.”

Finland topped the 2020 list, while the US’s ranking has dipped to No. 18, down from a peak of 11 in 2012.