New Course Offering: MKTG 491 – Special Topics, Measuring Development with Happiness: A Case Study of Bhutan

MKTG 491 – Special Topics, the Global Education Office (GEO)
Measuring Development with Happiness: A Case Study of Bhutan 

Instructor: Jeff Kulick, Marketing

Registration begins soon, and you should know about a Marketing elective that has never been offered before.

This course and trip focus on Bhutan, a small Himalayan country between India and China. It is a place of spectacular beauty, it has never been colonized, and it was only in the last part of the 20th century that it was opened to foreigners. Bhutan is a Buddhist country, and those values are also infused throughout the culture.

Bhutan has approached development and commerce on its own terms. The government decided that instead of measuring economic progress by standard financial measures, the happiness of the people of Bhutan and protecting its beauty through sustainability had to be maintained. New business and the rest of what we know of marketing and business there are very different.

That’s what we will be looking at—the changes in sustainability, culture and business. It’s a unique way to learn more about our own culture and business.

This is a rare opportunity. Bhutan limits tourists, and not many people have been there. Those who have been there are always excited to talk about it and return.

If you want information about the trip and course, you have a couple options. GEO has a dedicated website at You can also apply directly at that site.

Professor Kulick will also be more than happy to talk to you about the trip. He has office hours next week on Tuesday afternoon, October 30th from 4:30 to 5:30 pm (Room 149A Enterprise Hall). He has material with pictures that will impress you. If enough students are interested, he will hold an information session next Tuesday, October 30th or Wednesday, October 31st. If you have questions, you can also email him at

If you have successfully completed MKTG 303, you have satisfied the pre-requisites. The course number is MKTG 491, which is the designation for Special Topics—which this is! There will be four classes before going to Bhutan, then we will travel to Bhutan over Spring Break. There will be one class afterwards.

If you have not successfully completed MKTG 303, there are other options which you can discuss with GEO or your academic advisor.

Mary Byerley

Mary Byerley serves in the Office of Student Success and Academic Services for the School of Business at George Mason University.
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