Urban happiness can be defined as a concept that gives a positive perception of a place to the people who live in it and which induces them to spend a long time there and/or to opt to live there again with the same experience. While the identification of a happy place is something that is quite achievable, it is more difficult to investigate how to obtain it. The aim of this article is to present the Happy place mapping, which is carried out in the framework of CNR research projects. The Happy place mapping aims at identifying sustainable urban happiness and the factors that make places happy from the users’ point of view as well as identifying design interventions to enhance or create it. The method consists of surveys, observations and questionnaires. A series of case studies have been carried out in Europe, the United States and China. These case studies resulted in a Charter of Urban Happiness of 20 principles, which is part of the method. The description of the software that can support the method, still under development, and observation both on the method and software conclude the article.
place identity, public space, sustainable development, urban design, urban happiness
 Carmona, M., Heath, T., Oc, T. & Tiesdell, S., Public Places-Urban Spaces, Architectural Press: Oxford, 2010.
 Lynch, K., The Image of the City, Mit Press:Cambridge, 1960.
 Jacobs, J., The Death and Life of Great American Cities, New York: Random House, 1961.
 Appleyard, D., Livable Streets, University of California Press: Berkeley, 1981.
 Rose, G., Place and identity: a sense of place, In A Place in the World? Place, Cultures and Globalization, eds. D. Massey & P. Jess, Oxford: Open University/Oxford University Press, 1995.
 Knox, P.L., Styles, symbolism and settings: the built environment and imperatives of urbanised capitalism. Architecture et Comportment, 2, pp. 107–122, 1984.
 Relph, E., Place and Placelessness, London: Pion, 1976. M. Sepe, Int. J. Sus. Dev. Plann. Vol. 12, No. 4 (2017) 733
 Madanipour, A., Public and Private Spaces of the City, Routledge: London, 2003.
 Montgomery, J., Making a city: urbanity, vitality and urban design. Journal of Urban Design, 3, pp. 93–116, 1998. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13574809808724418
 Porteous, J.D., Environmental and Behavior: Planning and Everyday Urban Life, Reading, Massachusetts: Addison-Wesley, 1977.
 Project for Public Spaces, How to Turn a Place Around: a Handbook for Creating Successful Public Spaces, Project for Public Places: New York City, NY, 2001.
 Whyte, W.H., The Social Life of Small Public Space, Conservation Foundation: Washington DC, 1980.
 Sepe, M., Planning and Place in the City, Mapping Place Identity, Routlege: London- New York, 2013.
 Sepe, M., Preserving, reconstructing and enhancing the place identity: identifying principles of urban sustainability with placemaker method. International Journal of Sustainable Development and Planning, 9(2), 2014. http://dx.doi.org/10.2495/SDP-V9-N2-277-300
 Evans, B., McDonald, F. & Rudlin, D., Urban Identity. Learning from Place, Routledge, Londonn: New York, 2011.
 Friedmann, J., Place and place-making in cities: a global perspective. Planning Theory & Practice, 11(2). pp. 149–165, 2010. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14649351003759573
 Gehl, J., Cities For People, Island Press: Washington, 2010.
 Hauptmann, D. (ed) Cities in Transition, Publishers Rotterdam: Rotterdam, 2001.
 Lefebvre, H., The Production of Space, Basil Blackwell: London, 1991.
 Zelinka, A. & Brennan, D., Safescape, Creating Safer, More Livable Communities Though Planning and Design, Planner Press APA: Chicago, 2001.
 Florida, R., Mellander, C. & Rentfrow, P.J., The happiness of Cities. Regional Studies, 47, pp. 613–627, 2013. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00343404.2011.589830
 Burns, G.W., Naturally happy, naturally healthy: the role of natural environment in well-being. In eds. F.A. Huppert, N. Baylis & B. Keverne, The Science of Well-Being, Oxford University Press: New York, 2005.
 Taylor, A.F., Kuo, F.E. & Sullivan, W.C., Growing up in the inner city: Green spaces as places to grow. Environmental Behavior, 30(1), pp. 3–27, 1998. http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0013916598301001
 Zidansek, A., Sustainable development and happiness in nations. Energy, 32, pp. 891–897, 2007. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.energy.2006.09.016
 Montgomery, C., Happy City, Penguin: London, 2013.
 Sepe, M., Improving sustainable enhancement of cultural heritage: smart placemaking for experiential paths in pompeii. International Journal of Sustainable Development and Planning, 10(5), pp. 713–733, 2015. http://dx.doi.org/10.2495/SDP-V10-N5-713-733