A new article in the scientific journal Nature highlights the opportunity that the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) offer in terms of moving away from using gross domestic product (GDP) as a measure of national success. The article outlines how GDP is a misleading measure of national success, measuring mainly market transactions and failing to take into consideration social costs, environmental impacts and income inequality.
This new book by Julian Agyeman, Professor of Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning at Tufts University, offers an exploration of the origins and subsequent development of the concept of just sustainability. Some of the key topics discussed include: food justice, sovereignty and urban agriculture; community, space, place(making) and spatial justice; the democratization of our streets and public spaces; how to create culturally inclusive spaces; intercultural cities and social inclusion; green-collar jobs and the just transition; and alternative economic models such as co-production.
The Legatum Institute recently launched the 2013 Legatum Prosperity Index, its annual assessment of global wealth and wellbeing covering 142 countries. The ranking is based on a variety of factors including wealth, economic growth, and quality of life.
For decades, the best way to measure the development and progress of societies and nations has been debated. Gross domestic product (GDP) as the main indicator of development has long been criticized, on the basis that it does not account for the state of the environment or for quality of life. Genuine Progress Indicator (GPI) is a composite indicator that indicates the success of a society in “sustainable well-being creation”. It was developed during the 1990s, and has been pioneered in Finland, where it was first calculated for the nation in 2008.
In his latest book, internationally renowned author Sir Peter Hall investigates how the UK can create better towns and cities. ‘Good Cities, Better Lives: How Europe Discovered the Lost Art of Urbanism’ provides an analysis of the main issues for urban planning and development – in economic development and job generation, sustainable development, housing policy, transport and development mechanisms – and assesses where practice in the UK has fallen short.