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Literature Review of Frameworks for Macro-indicators

  • Andrew Sharpe

    ()

There has been an explosion of interest in recent years in Canada and other countries in macro-indicators and composite indexes of economic and social well-being. This reflects growing recognition of the important role macro-indicators can play as a tool for evaluating trends in and levels of economic and social development and for assessing the impact of policy on well-being. This report provides a literature review of conceptual/operational frameworks for the development of macro-indicators that give an assessment of economic, labour market and social conditions or states of well-being. The report provides an analysis of frameworks for macro-indicators by discussing general framework issues; identifies and describes six specific frameworks for macro-indicators which the author regards as particularly important or relevant, and discusses the strengths and weaknesses of these sets of indicators/composite indexes; and provides a description of an additional 31 sets of indicators and composite indexes broken down into economic, social, economic/social, and labour market areas. The report concludes that no existing framework currently includes all important concepts and linkages and that it is unlikely that one ever will. As the survey of the macro-indicators literature reveals, the development of a framework for macro-indicators involves choices related to the domains of interest, the purpose for which the indicator is designed, and the population to be covered, among others. Choices or tradeoffs must be made and a balance struck between conceptual sophistication and transparency and between complex linkages that could potentially confuse the user and simplicity.

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File URL: http://www.csls.ca/reports/LitRevMacro-indicators.pdf
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Paper provided by Centre for the Study of Living Standards in its series CSLS Research Reports with number 2004-03.

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Date of creation: Feb 2004
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Handle: RePEc:sls:resrep:0403
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  1. Richard Estes, 1997. "Social Development Trends in Europe, 1970–1994: Development Prospects for the New Europe," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 42(1), pages 1-19, September.
  2. Andrew Sharpe, 1999. "A Survey of Indicators of Economic and Social Well-being," CSLS Research Reports 99wb, Centre for the Study of Living Standards.
  3. Lars Osberg & Andrew Sharpe, 2001. "Trends in Economic Well-being in Canada in the 1990s," The Review of Economic Performance and Social Progress, in: Andrew Sharpe, Executive Director & France St-Hilaire, Vice-President , Research & Keith Banting, Di (ed.), The Review of Economic Performance and Social Progress 2001: The Longest Decade: Canada in the 1990s, volume 1 Centre for the Study of Living Standards;The Institutute for Research on Public Policy.
  4. Lars Osberg & Andrew Sharpe, 2010. "The Index of Economic Well-Being," Challenge, M.E. Sharpe, Inc., vol. 53(4), pages 25-42, July.
  5. William D. Nordhaus & James Tobin, 1972. "Is Growth Obsolete?," NBER Chapters, in: Economic Research: Retrospect and Prospect, Volume 5, Economic Growth, pages 1-80 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    • William D. Nordhaus & James Tobin, 1973. "Is Growth Obsolete?," NBER Chapters, in: The Measurement of Economic and Social Performance, pages 509-564 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Lars Osberg & Andrew Sharpe, 2003. "Human Well-being and Economic Well-being: What Values Are Implicit in Current Indices?," CSLS Research Reports 2003-04, Centre for the Study of Living Standards.
  7. Lars Osberg & Andrew Sharpe, 2003. "An Index of Labour Market Well-being for OECD Countries," CSLS Research Reports 2003-05, Centre for the Study of Living Standards, revised Jan 2004.
  8. Rahman, Tauhidur & Mittelhammer, Ron C. & Wandschneider, Philip, 2005. "Measuring the Quality of Life across Countries: A Sensitivity Analysis of Well-being Indices," Working Paper Series RP2005/06, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  9. Feres, Patricio & Immervoll, Herwig & Lietz, Christine & Levy, Horacio & Mantovani, Daniela & Sutherland, Holly, 2002. "Indicators for social inclusion in the European Union: how responsive are they to macro-level changes?," EUROMOD Working Papers EM3/02, EUROMOD at the Institute for Social and Economic Research.
  10. Osberg, Lars & Sharpe, Andrew, 2002. "An Index of Economic Well-Being for Selected OECD Countries," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 48(3), pages 291-316, September.
  11. Osberg, L. & Sharpe, A., 1998. "An Index of Economic Well-being for Canada," Department of Economics at Dalhousie University working papers archive 98-08, Dalhousie, Department of Economics.
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