Good growth index - Our report on economic wellbeing

One of the toughest questions for today's governments is how to achieve balanced economic growth that is financially, socially and environmentally sound.

UK's bumpy road out of recession means, understandably, that policy makers and commentators are focusing on quarterly gross domestic product (GDP) as the key barometer of our economic health.  But GDP as a meaningful measure of wellbeing and success is being challenged.

We have been working with general public, businesses, politicians and policy makers to develop an index for 'Good Growth', with recommendations for government on how this can be achieved.

In the following video, G&PS Lead Partner Paul Cleal talks to John Hawksworth from PwC, Ben Rogers from Demos and Dr Adam Marshall from the British Chambers of Commerce about the research findings.

Our research by PwC and Demos shows that the public – and business – take a much wider view of what constitutes economic success:
 

  • In the eyes of the public, future 'good growth' relies on jobs and income as well as health, work-life balance and housing.
  • When forced to make trade-offs, work-life balance assumes an even greater importance to the working-age public, which is willing to sacrifice income to spend more time with family and friends.
  • Norway, Germany and the Netherlands are the top countries to live and work in among major OECD countries, according to the index.  The UK scores lowest of any of the countries we looked at, bar Spain.
  • Within the UK, the South East, South West and Eastern regions have the most attractive economies in which to live and work, with London, the North East and Wales scoring lowest.

Based on our findings, we recommend that the government tracks not only GDP as a measure of economic success but also a wider measure of 'good growth'.  This will help ensure that economic policy decisions are aligned with what citizens say is important.

Click here for the full Good Growth report