30/01/2012 - OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría highlighted the importance of developing new metrics for measuring progress that go beyond GDP during a discussion on 28 January 2012 at the World Economic Forum in Davos.
Mr Gurría said that the economic crisis has shown that it is essential to make well-being a central criteria for determining policies. Governments’ response to the crisis must be based around policies that lay the foundation for more inclusive and sustainable growth in the future, he said.
The OECD is playing a leading role in the global movement towards more effective measurement of well-being and progress of societies.
The Better Life Initiative, which was launched in May 2011 is a first attempt to bring together internationally comparable well-being measures. One component of the initiative is the How’s Life? report, which presents indicators for 11 dimensions of people's well-being in 40 countries. Another component is Your Better Life Index, an interactive tool enabling citizens to rate countries according to their own preferences about what matters most in life.
The OECD is also simultaneously pursuing a broad statistical and research agenda, in close collaboration with its member and partner countries, national statistical agencies and international organisations. The agenda aims to lay the foundations for better statistics tomorrow, and is closely aligned with the recommendations of the Stiglitz-Sen-Fitoussi Commission, which reported on going beyond GDP in 2009, as well as many ongoing national and regional initiatives.
New measurement work undertaken by the OECD covers: the inclusion of disparities in national accounts; integrated analysis of the joint distribution of households’ income, consumption and wealth; development of better measures of morbidity and adults’ competencies; estimates of carbon-emissions embedded in consumption; development of monetary measures of the stock of human capital; and guidelines on measuring subjective well-being.