Friday, November 26, 2010

Britain to Start Measuring General Well-Being

The coalition government of Conservative and Liberal Democratic Parties in Britain is planning to start a regular measure of the population's general well-being, to complement the more familiar national economic scales. The Labour opposition sees this as a trick to show that people are happy in bad economic times, justifying the government's strong austerity cuts in government services. Tory Prime Minister David Cameron, though, says that promoting the general well-being of the population is the main business of government, and is something they should have been measuring before.

I agree with Cameron on this point. In fact, I think measuring general well-being is a direct continuation of the founding principles of the Liberal Party, the ancestor of the Tories' coalition partner.

I believe we will see more governments attending to the people's general well-being as a crucial measure of national success.


Benjamin said...

I also am inclined to support such a measure. I'm curious, though, to see exactly what measures will be combined into a "GWB index". It seems that "well-being" is a very subjective thing to try to measure, especially when compared to relatively objective economic indicators. And I'm interested to see how a GWB would compare to other quality-of-life measures that are currently out there.

Gruntled said...

They have not posted the measure yet. I will be watching for it.