A review of the literature on well-being in Italy: A human development perspective
In the recent years a large literature on indicators of well-being and quality of life has proliferated, all departing from a strict economic view of these phenomena. While all these indicators sign an important step for the recognition of well-being as a multidimensional phenomenon, they are often rooted in very different approaches –when we can identify a relevant “theoretical” framework-, such as basic needs, happiness, or capability approach, and vary significantly in terms of statistical quality. This paper has a twofold objective: (1) to analyze the state of the art of the literature on well-being in Italy, where research institutes, scholars, and other organizations/institutions have elaborated a large number of alternative measures; (2) to examine this literature from the perspective of the human development approach. Thus, we investigate the pros and cons of the existing approaches/indicators and derive whether they are rooted in the human development approach. This work is deemed necessary for the final goal of constructing a context-based indicator of human development for Italy and its territorial units.
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