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Mental Capital and Wellbeing

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  • Author(s)Cary Cooper / Usha Goswami / Barbara J. Sahakian
  • Edition1
  • Published28th October 2009
  • PublisherJohn Wiley & Sons (UK)
  • ISBN
  • University course code
This major new reference presents The Foresight Mental
Capital and Wellbeing Project (a UK Government project in the
Government Office for Science). It offers a comprehensive
exploration of how mental capital and wellbeing operate over the
lifespan; how experiences in the family, in school, at work and
following retirement augment or reduce mental capital and
wellbeing, and the impact that this has for the individual and for
the welfare and economic progress of the nation.

Mental Capital and Wellbeingcomprises a series of
scientific reviews written by leading international scientists and
social scientists in the field. The reviews undertake systematic
analyses of the evidence base surrounding five key themes, on which
they propose future policies will have to be based. An
internationally renowned team of Editors introduce each theme and
draw together conclusions in terms of both policy and

Section 1 (Mental Capital and Wellbeing Through Life)
Mental capital refers to the totality of an
individual?s cognitive and emotional resources, including
their cognitive capability, flexibility and efficiency of learning,
emotional intelligence and resilience in the face of stress. The
extent of an individual?s resources reflects his or her basic
endowment (e.g. genes and early biological programming), motivation
and experiences (e.g. education) which take place throughout the
life course. This section presents the very latest on the science
of mental capital throughout life.

Section 2 (Learning Through Life) provides a coherent
overview of a fast-moving and complex field of policy and practice.
Educational attainment has a considerable impact on physical and
mental wellbeing, both directly and indirectly, by enabling people
better to achieve their goals. The ability to continue learning
throughout the lifespan is critical to a successful and rewarding
life in contemporary societies.

Section 3 (Mental Health and Ill-Health) draws together the
most recent evidence about positive mental health as well as a
range of mental disorders to consider their importance to the
population and economy in terms of prevalence and disability and
the wider burden on society.

Section 4 (Wellbeing and Work) ? It is estimated that
13 million working days are lost through stress each year, costing
the economy over £3.7 billion per annum. This theme explores
those drivers that influence the nature and structure of work and
the impact this has on employee wellbeing.

Section 5 (Learning Difficulties) ? This theme provides
a cutting-edge picture of how recent insights from genetics,
cognitive and neuroscience improve our understanding of learning
difficulties such as dyslexia, dyscalculia and
attention-deficit-hyperactivity disorder. Reviews focus on how
current research can contribute to early diagnosis and improved

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