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 the 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 Mental Well-being’ comprises 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 practice.
Section I: ‘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 well-being, 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 II: ‘Mental 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 III: ‘Mental Well-being at 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 well-being.
Section IV: ‘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 intervention
Section V: ‘Mental Capital throughout 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.