How’s life?

There is more to life than the cold numbers of GDP and economic statistics Explore the OECD Index to compare well-being across countries. The Index is based on 11 topics the OECD has identified as essential, in the areas of material living conditions and quality of life.

A better understanding of people’s well‑being is central to developing better policies for better lives. Well‑being is multidimensional, covering aspects of life ranging from civic engagement to housing, from household income to work‑life balance, and from skills to health status. A thorough assessment of whether life is getting better requires a wide range of metrics, captured on a human scale, and able to reflect the diverse experiences of people. That is what this report aims to supply. The latest evidence on well‑being in 11 different dimensions of life suggests that OECD countries have diverse patterns of strengths and weaknesses. Predictably, countries ranking in the top third of the OECD in gross domestic product (GDP) per capita terms tend to do well overall, especially in relation to material well‑being outcomes such as household income and earnings. Nonetheless, countries can have comparative weaknesses in areas such as job security, air quality, housing affordability, and work‑life balance at any level of GDP per capita. While we have known for a long time that there is more to life than GDP, this report shows where even the richest OECD countries still have room to improve the well‑being of their citizens.

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