Indicators alternative to GDP for measuring well-being and social progress
Elisabetta Segre, Tommaso Rondinella and Anat Itay.
In recent years, a new movement aiming at moving societies “beyond GDP” is emerging following the initiatives carried out by political authorities and civil society, the research on the measurement of quality-of-life and happiness, and the initiatives undertaken by the OECD on measuring and fostering societal progress.
Among the many experiences the most relevant ones are those that follow a deliberative approach able to grant sufficient legitimacy to the proposed indicators.
In Italy there two major example of well-being measures at national level based on a deliberative approach:
BES (Benessere Equo e Sostenibile – Equitable and sustainable wellbeing) is a set of indicators developed by Istat together with the National Council for Economics and Labor (CNEL) through a national consultation set up to identify a shared set of indicators of the progress of Italian society.
Civil Society Organizations have also carried out efforts to integrate various aspects of economic progress, environmental sustainability and social welfare into an aggregate measure of well-being. Under Lunaria’s coordination, Sbilanciamoci network developed QUARS a composite index of “regional quality of development”
The local level may allow to direct participation of citizens leading to the so-called “community indicators”: