Being able to measure people’s quality of life is fundamental when assessing the progress of societies. There is now widespread acknowledgement that measuring subjective well-being is an essential part of measuring quality of life alongside other social and economic dimensions. As a first step to improving the measures of quality of life, the OECD has produced Guidelines which provide advice on the collection and use of measures of subjective well-being. These Guidelines have been produced as part of the OECD Better Life Initiative, a pioneering project launched in 2011, with the objective to measure society’s progress across eleven domains of well-being, ranging from jobs, health and housing, through to civic engagement and the environment.
These Guidelines represent the first attempt to provide international recommendations on collecting, publishing, and analysing subjective well-being data. They provide guidance on collecting information on people's evaluations and experiences of life, as well as on collecting “eudaimonic” measures of psychological well-being. The Guidelines also outline why measures of subjective well-being are relevant for monitoring and policy making, and why national statistical agencies have a critical role to play in enhancing the usefulness of existing measures. They identify the best approaches for measuring, in a reliable and consistent way, the various dimensions of subjective well-being, and provide guidance for reporting on such measures. The Guidelines also include a number of prototype survey modules on subjective well-being that national and international agencies can use in their surveys.
Quarterly Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the G20 area grew by 0.5% in the fourth quarter of 2012 compared with 0.6% in the third quarter, according to preliminary estimates. The aggregate G20 GDP growth rate however continues to mask diverging patterns across the world’s largest economies.
The OECD unemployment rate increased to 8.1% in January 2013, compared with 8.0% in the previous month.
Composite leading indicators (CLIs), designed to anticipate turning-points in economic activity relative to trend, show diverging growth patterns in the economic outlook of major economies.
This easing in the annual rate of inflation mainly reflected the slower growth in energy prices, which increased by 1.8% in the year to January, down from 2.9% in the year to December.
Compared to the third quarter, the value of merchandise exports and imports for the G7 and BRICS countries increased by 1.2% and 1.0%, respectively.
By Martine Durand, Director, OECD Directorate of Statistics - Technological and social innovations are resulting in huge flows of new data every day. This proliferation of so-called “big data” has the potential to change the way information is collected and used to inform policymaking.
Provisional estimates show that quarterly gross domestic product (GDP) in the OECD area fell by 0.2% in the fourth quarter of 2012, after a 0.3% increase in the previous quarter. This is the first contraction of GDP in the OECD area since the very sharp decline in the first quarter of 2009 (minus 2.3%).
The Manual on Statistics of International Trade in Services 2010 (MSITS 2010) - the first issue was published in 2002 - is a joint publication of seven agencies: the UN, EC, IMF, OECD, UNCTAD, UNWTO and WTO. It addresses a growing demand from governments, businesses and analysts for more relevant, detailed and internationally comparable statistics on services trade.
The aim of this OECD workshop on productivity is to examine the role of productivity for growth, including in recovering from the crisis; explore key measurement challenges; assess the determinants of productivity growth and explore the role of policies in shaping productivity performance across countries.