#297 Engineering Happiness with Rakesh Sarin, PhD


Dr. Rakesh Sarin came to the United States with only fifty dollars in his pocket, but with a lot of enthusiasm to pursue his PhD degree at UCLA. He now holds the Paine Chair in Management at the UCLA Anderson School of Management.

Rakesh grew up in a small town in Northwest India where modern day comforts were few, but joy was plentiful. He lived in a joint family with his brother, three sisters, parents, uncles, and grandparents. The family emphasized education and sharing. There was a room in the house that served as a temple and was home to the goddess Durga. Religion was part of daily life, but was not overemphasized. All of the children in the neighborhood played together – favorite sports were kite flying and cricket in fields shared with wandering goats and cows.

Rakesh received his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering and an MBA at the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmadabad.
Soon after coming to UCLA, he met Anna and they have been soul mates ever since. Anna and Rakesh have two grown and responsible children, Ravi and Kavita, and an adorable grandson, Kyle.

Rakesh’s research interests are in decision making under uncertainty and he has applied his research to earthquake safety, environmental protection, and new product development decisions. He was awarded the Ramsey Medal for his contributions to Decision Analysis in 2009. At the UCLA Anderson School, he has been recognized for his leadership of the faculty through the La Force Leadership Award and for his teaching through the Neidorf “Decade” Teaching Award and the Executive MBA Teaching Award.

Rakesh’s interest in happiness research is motivated by a desire to improve joy in everyone’s life. Manel and Rakesh have been working together for the past ten years and share the same belief that happiness is guided by specific, discoverable laws. By following these laws, everyone has the chance to improve their happiness.

Check out the following Psychology CE Courses based on listening to Shrink Rap Radio interviews:
Jungian Psychotherapy Part 1 (6 CEUs)
Jungian Psychotherapy Part 2 (7 CEUs)
Jungian Psychotherapy Part 3 (7 CEUs)
Jungian Psychotherapy discounted Package of the Three Above (20 CEUs)
Wisdom of The Dream (4 CEUs)
Positive Psychology (6 CEUs)

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A Psychology Podcast by David Van Nuys, Ph.D.



  1. Albie
    Posted September 6, 2013 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

    Wow Dr Dave! I’ve just discovered you thanks to my friend Dean Mason. I’ve just heard a financial request and it hadn’t occurred to me that all these fabulous gifts aren’t just falling from the sky. As of pay day I want to pledge my allegence(sp) then and every month. Thank you so much. I love your aura and everything you’ve brought to us all.

  2. Posted September 6, 2013 at 7:21 pm | Permalink

    Hey Albie,

    I’m really glad you have discovered the show and are loving it. You’ve got a lot of catching up to do! And I particularly love the way you phrased your commitment to helping support the show.



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