Alternative Measures of Well-Being [E-Book] / Romina Boarini, Åsa Johansson and Marco d'Ercole
Boarini, Romina.
Johansson, Åsa. / d'Ercole, Marco.
Paris : OECD Publishing, 2006
59 p. ; 21 x 29.7cm.
OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers ; 33
Social Issues/Migration/Health
Full Text
All discussions about the desirability of policy reforms rest on judgements about their effects on individuals and societal well-being. Yet, suitable measures for assessing how well-being is changing over time or compares across countries are lacking. This problem is, of course, not new and standard economic theory has provided, over the years, a range of insights about the criteria and domains that are most critical for the measurement of well-being, and on the relation between well-being and measures of economic resources. This paper does not revisit this theoretical discussion, nor does it provide a comprehensive review of different approaches to the measurement of well-being. It rather assesses whether GDP per capita is an adequate proxy as a measure of well-being or whether other indicators — used either as substitutes or as complements to GDP per capita — are more suitable for that purpose. Attention is limited to only some of the factors that influence well-being, and excludes some critical elements such as the environment, home production and other non-market factors.