Tuesday, February 7, 2012

OECD: How's life? Measuring well-being in Sweden (seven in rank) and worldwide

From: http://www.oecd.org/document/10/0,3746,en_2649_201185_48791306_1_1_1_1,00.html

October 2011
ISBN 9789264121164
285 pages
Every person aspires to a good life. But what does "a good or a better life" mean? This report looks at the most important aspects that shape people's lives and well-being: income, jobs, housing, health, work and life-balance, education, social connections, civic engagement and governance, environment, personal security and subjective well-being. It paints a comprehensive picture of well-being in OECD countries and other major economies, by looking at people's material living conditions and quality of life across the population. The report responds to the needs of citizens for better information on well-being and to the needs of policy makers to give a more accurate picture of societal progress.
The report finds that well-being has increased on average over the past fifteen years: people are richer and more likely to be employed; they enjoy better housing conditions and are exposed to lower air pollution; they live longer and are more educated; they are also exposed to fewer crimes. But differences across countries are large. Furthermore, some groups of the population, particularly less educated and low-income people, tend to fare systematically worse in all dimensions of well-being considered in this report. For instance they live shorter lives and report greater health problems; their children obtain worse school results; they participate less in political activities; they can rely on lower social networks in case of needs; they are more exposed to crime and pollution; they tend to be less satisfied with their life as a whole than more educated and higher-income people.
How are you feeling today?
Percentage of people reporting more positive than negative emotion in one typical day, 2010
Note: Data refer to 2008 for Iceland and Norway; and to 2009 for Estonia, Israel, Switzerland and South Africa.
Source: OECD calculations based on Gallup World Poll
How's Life? is part of the OECD Better Life Initiative, launched by the Organisation on the occasion of its 50th Anniversary. The OECD Better Life Initiative aims to promote "Better Policies for Better Lives", in line with the OECD's overarching mission. One of the other pillars of the OECD Better Life Initiative is the Your Better Life Index (www.oecdbetterlifeindex.org), an interactive composite index of well-being that aims at involving citizens in the debate on societal progress.

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