Cross-disciplinary ‘happiness research’ has made big progress in the measurementnof individual welfare. This development makes it tempting to pursue the old dream ofnmaximizing aggregate happiness as a social welfare function. However, we postulate that thenappropriate approach is not to maximize aggregate happiness in seeking to improve outcomesnby direct policy interventions. The goal of happiness research should rather be to improve thennature of the processes through which individuals can express their preferences. Individualsnshould become better able to advance their idea of the good life, both individually andncollectively.