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Eight Steps To Enabling Wellbeing If we are to continue to improve wellbeing a fundamental rethinking of the state’s relationship to citizens and communities is required. Certain areas of our wellbeing can be best improved through our interactions with friends and family and through community activity. The state should continue providing the public services that it excels at but it must also take on a new role that of the ‘Enabling State’ empowering and supporting communities, individuals and families to play a more active role in improving their own wellbeing.. In this Carnegie UK report, Sir John Elvidge presents the concept of the Enabling State and sets out eight steps that governments can take to improve the wellbeing of all sections of our society, to support individuals and communities to achieve positive change and ensure that the most vulnerable people are not left behind.
TOWARDS A REGENERATIVE ECONOMY - A report for The Capital Institute by John Fullerton April 2015 It is our view that the exponential growth of compound investment returns demanded by the financial system is in irreconcilable conflict with the finite boundaries of the biosphere. We believe this relentless and narrow pursuit of exponential growth of returns on financial capital, without reference to either the laws of science or to universally acknowledged moral and ethical values, is contributing to an ever-widening and destabilizing wealth gap, and security crises around the globe. Our mission is to provide a new theory grounded in real-world practice and accompanying narrative of the supportive, non-coercive role finance must play in the transition to a Regenerative Economy, an economy that harmonizes the multiple kinds of capital essential to human and planetary well-being. A multitude of innovators and entrepreneurs around the world are experimenting with practical ways to reimagine capitalism so that it works for all levels of society, as well as for the planet. Their common goal is to create a self-organizing, naturally self-maintaining, highly adaptive Regenerative form of capitalism that produces lasting social and economic vitality for global civilization as a whole. Over the last two years, Capital Institute has been working with many of these thought leaders and entrepreneurs in a quest to understand what a theoretical framework for regenerative economies would look like, and what conditions and processes contribute to their long-term systemic health. The report also explores how a Regenerative Economy would differ from today’s flawed theory of capitalism, and how it would compare to other New Economy ideas such as natural capitalism, sustainable capitalism, conscious capitalism, doughnut economics, circular economies, sharing economies, steady-state economies, etc. Our Regenerative story starts with a single core idea , "The universal patterns and principles the cosmos uses to build stable, healthy, and sustainable systems throughout the real world can and must be used as a model for economic system design"
There has never been such a crying need for a bold vision of the future. If we fail to reverse the policies that have been driving climate change, we face disaster on a world scale. Yet since the 1980s, radical politics has lost its vision of how to create a qualitatively better society for everyone and lost the ability to inspire. In ‘A Convenient Truth’ Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett set out a path towards a society that’s better for us and the planet. Inequality drives status insecurity, which fuels the consumerism that is destroying our planet. But the things we buy aren’t making us any happier: the link between economic development and real improvements in quality of life is broken in rich societies. For real improvements in wellbeing, we need a more equal society, which is best achieved by putting democracy at the heart of the economy. Indeed, the authors see the extension of democracy into economic institutions as the next major step in the long project of human emancipation.
At the Arts Council, when they talk about the value of arts and culture to society, they always start with its intrinsic value: how arts and culture can illuminate our inner lives and enrich our emotional world. This is what they cherish. They also understand that arts and culture has a wider, more measurable impact on our economy, health and wellbeing, society and education. It’s important we also recognize this impact to help people think of our arts and culture for what they are: a strategic national resource. The value of arts and culture to people and society – an evidence review, gathers information that shows where the impact of their work is felt, whilst also identifying any gaps to help shape future research commissions.
It's often said that it's better to give than receive but did you know that this is actually backed up by research? The UK faces challenging and unstable times with volatile economic markets and job uncertainty. Many people say they feel too stressed and busy to worry about helping others or say they will focus on doing good deeds when they have more ‘spare time’ but the evidence shows that helping others is beneficial forpeople’s mental health and wellbeing. It can help: - reduce stress - improve emotional wellbeing - benefit physical health - bring a sense of belonging and reduce isolation - get rid of negative feelings
This guide introduces the 2010 Gross National Happiness (GNH) Index of Bhutan. It explains the origins of the concept of GNH, its grounding in Bhutanese culture and history, and describes how the concept is being operationalized in the form of the GNH Index in some novel and innovative ways. Any discussion of the GNH in Bhutan must begin from the understanding that it is distinct from the western literature on ‘happiness’ in two ways. First it is multidimensional –not focused only on subjective well-being to the exclusion of other dimensions – and second, it internalizes other regarding motivations. While multidimensional measures of the quality of life and well-being are increasingly discussed, Bhutan is innovative in constructing a multidimensional measure which is itself relevant for policy and is also directly associated with a linked set of policy and programme screening tools. This guide presents the GNH Index which provides an overview of national GNH across 9 domains, comprising of 33 clustered indicators, each one of which is composed of several variables. When unpacked, the 33 clustered indicators have 124 variables.
This report examines what the collaborative economy is, who is operating and participating in it, and looks at how it can be supported and managed. The collaborative economy involves using internet technologies to connect distributed groups of people make better use of goods, skills and other useful things. It is going through a period of growth and experimentation and in order to gauge where the collaborative economy is headed, we need to start by getting a better grasp of its current state.
Is economic growth always a good thing? Why are people in countries like the US and UK not happier or working fewer hours when GDP has tripled since 1950? Dan O'Neill's thought-provoking...
For sustainable development to flourish, we have to recognize that social, economic and environmental well-being are indivisible. It's only when they are considered together that society can evolve. Sustainable happiness is the key to our progress. Our Happiness and wellbeing are not only why sustainability matters; it's how we can get there. The good news is that everyone can make a difference. Learn how it all starts within.
The 2014 Human Development Report “Sustaining Human Progress: Reducing Vulnerabilities and Building Resilience” - shows that overall global trends in human development are positive. Yet, people at all ages are also facing threats and challenges to their wellbeing, including by natural or human-induced disasters and crises. While every individual and society is vulnerable to risk, some suffer far less harm and recover more quickly than others when adversity strikes. The Report asks why that is and considers vulnerability and resilience through a human development lens. The Report takes a people-centred approach. It identifies the ‘structurally vulnerable’ groups of people who are more vulnerable than others by virtue of their history or of their unequal treatment by the rest of society. Based on analysis of the available evidence, the Report makes a number of important recommendations for achieving a world which addresses vulnerabilities and builds resilience to future shocks. It calls for universal access to basic social services, especially health and education; stronger social protection, including unemployment insurance and pensions; and a commitment to full employment, recognizing that the value of employment extends far beyond the income it generates.
Healthy Ireland is a new Government plan, that involves every part of Irish society in improving our health and wellbeing. The wellbeing and health of the people living in our country is the most valuable resource that we have. Health is major asset for our society, and improving the health and wellbeing of the nation is a national priority for the Government. Healthy Ireland is a new national framework for action to improve the health and wellbeing of our country over the coming generation. It was published on March 28th 2013, setting out four central goals for our health and wellbeing, and clear routes and strategies to achieve these goals, in which all people and all parts of our society can participate. This framework is needed because the health and wellbeing of our country is changing, and there are many trends that are leading us toward an unhealthy and extremely costly future. Evidence and experience from around the world clearly shows that to create positive health and wellbeing change takes the involvement of the whole community, the whole of Government, all of society working in unison. A healthy Ireland; where everyone can enjoy physical and mental health and wellbeing to their full potential; where wellbeing is valued and supported at every level of society and is everyone’s responsibility. Achieving this vision will be complex, and will take place at a growing pace over the coming 10-20 years. Influencing current health trends, reversing them, and moving toward a better future will take senior government and societal commitment, will take time, planning and strong leadership, will take good systems of measurement and implementation, and will rest ultimately with supporting people to make healthy choices, day-by-day, as they go about their daily lives. Healthy Ireland’s four high-level goals will be at the heart of all actions and activities. They are: • Increasing the proportion of Irish people who are healthy at all stages of life • Reducing health inequalities • Protecting the public from threats to health and wellbeing • Creating an environment where every sector of society can play its part
All local authorities hope to govern in a way that promotes well-being and tackles societal problems at their root. But with finances slashed and demand for public services swelling, struggling councils are seeing these objectives drift further and further out of reach. What can be done? A new model of public service commissioning is evolving across England that may hold the key. The word ‘crisis’ has become commonplace in local government over the last five years. Reeling from cuts of up to 30%, councils are faced with the seemingly impossible task of stretching dwindling funds ever further. But new strategies are out there. By embracing the skills, time and energy of those who know most about public services – the people who use them – and switching focus towards identifying and achieving the long-term outcomes that really matter, councils are breathing new life into the services they commission. This handbook and practical guide is the result of eight years of collaboration between the New Economics Foundation (NEF) and local authorities. It sets out a model for designing, commissioning and delivering services so that they: * focus on commissioning for ‘outcomes’, meaning the long-term changes that services and other activities achieve. * promote co-production to make services more effective and bring in new resources, by working in partnership with the people using their services * promote social value by placing social, environmental and economic outcomes at the heart of commissioning.
The coming decades will throw up huge challenges and extraordinary uncertainty. As the world becomes increasingly inter-connected, we’ll cross thresholds in environmental, social and economic systems. Unforeseen events, so-called black swans, will happen. We do know the world population will grow, food production will be challenged, and the supply of some resources will struggle to keep up with demand. But opportunities are bound to emerge from these challenges. If we seize the opportunities we could produce a much more stable, equal and healthy society by 2050. We could provide well-being for everyone and for our planet.
The paper begins by highlighting the rationale for focusing on the diets question, and then moves on to discuss definitions of ‘good nutrition’ on the one hand, and ‘sustainability’ on the other.  The main substance of the paper concerns itself with the major food groups that constitute UK’s Eatwell plate, examining the health and sustainability issues that their consumption raises, before drawing some conclusions.  A review of recent studies in this area is also included. An important limitation of the paper is that it focuses largely on developed country contexts.
The Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) commissioned researchers from the London School of Economics (LSE) to undertake analysis of Understanding Society data to develop the evidence base on the wellbeing impacts of cultural engagement and sport participation. This work gives us new evidence of the link between our policies and the social impacts of engagement in both sport and culture.
The Center of Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) and the International Youth Foundation (IYF) have released a groundbreaking tool, The Global Youth Wellbeing Index, which measures and compares the quality of life for youth in 30 countries. Representing nearly 70 percent of the world’s youth population, the Index measures wellbeing in six domains: citizen participation; economic opportunity; education; health; information and communications technology; and safety and security. The Index is the first of its kind to gather and connect youth-related data to assess and compare the state of young people around the world. It will help policy, society, and business leaders collectively make smarter investments in youth programming, encourage a coordinated approach to planning policies, and help elevate youth issues to the top of the global agenda. Although youth ages 10 to 24 comprise a quarter of the global population, they remain an underutilized source of innovation, energy, and enthusiasm. In fact, nearly half of the youth worldwide are under- or un-employed. Yet, at a time when policy and investment decisions to address these challenges are increasingly data driven, existing data on youth development and wellbeing are often fragmented, inconsistent, or nonexistent.
Over the last half century, economic growth has lifted hundreds of millions out of poverty and improved the lives of many more. Yet it is increasingly evident that a model of development based on economic development alone is incomplete. A society which fails to address basic human needs, equip citizens to improve their quality of life, erodes the environment, and limits opportunity for its citizens is not succeeding. Economic growth without social progress results in lack of inclusion, discontent, and social unrest. A broader and more inclusive model of development requires new metrics with which policymakers and citizens can evaluate national performance. We must move beyond simply measuring Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita, and make social and environmental measurement integral to national performance measurement. Tracking social and environmental performance rigorously will inform and drive improvement in policy choices and investments by all stakeholders. Measuring social progress will also help to better translate economic gains into better social and environmental performance, which will unleash even greater economic success. The Social Progress Index aims to meet this pressing need by creating a holistic and robust measurement framework for national social and environmental performance that can be used by leaders in government, business and civil society at the country level as a tool to benchmark success, improve policy, and catalyze action. Our vision is a world in which social progress sits alongside economic prosperity as the twin scorecards of success.
Being able to measure people’s quality of life is fundamental when assessing the progress of societies. There is now widespread acknowledgement that measuring subjective well-being is an essential part of measuring quality of life alongside other social and economic dimensions. As a first step to improving the measures of quality of life, the OECD has produced Guidelines which provide advice on the collection and use of measures of subjective well-being. These Guidelines have been produced as part of the OECD Better Life Initiative, a pioneering project launched in 2011, with the objective to measure society’s progress across eleven domains of well-being, ranging from jobs, health and housing, through to civic engagement and the environment. These Guidelines represent the first attempt to provide international recommendations on collecting, publishing, and analysing subjective well-being data. They provide guidance on collecting information on people's evaluations and experiences of life, as well as on collecting "eudaimonic" measures of psychological well-being. The Guidelines also outline why measures of subjective well-being are relevant for monitoring and policy making, and why national statistical agencies have a critical role to play in enhancing the usefulness of existing measures. They identify the best approaches for measuring, in a reliable and consistent way, the various dimensions of subjective well-being, and provide guidance for reporting on such measures. The Guidelines also include a number of prototype survey modules on subjective well-being that national and international agencies can use in their surveys.
Almost half of the world’s wealth is now owned by just one percent of the population, and seven out of ten people live in countries where economic inequality has increased in the last 30 years. The World Economic Forum has identified economic inequality as a major risk to human progress, impacting social stability within countries and threatening security on a global scale. This massive concentration of economic resources in the hands of fewer people presents a real threat to inclusive political and economic systems, and compounds other inequalities – such as those between women and men. Left unchecked, political institutions are undermined and governments overwhelmingly serve the interests of economic elites – to the detriment of ordinary people. In this paper, Oxfam shows how extreme inequality is not inevitable, with examples of policies from around the world which have reduced inequality and developed more representative politics, benefiting all, both rich and poor. Oxfam calls on leaders at the 2014 World Economic Forum at Davos to make the commitments needed to counter the growing tide of inequality.
Seismic events have convulsed global markets since 2008, when From Poverty to Power was first published. World news has been full of stories reflecting a profound sense of uncertainty about global futures. In response, this new edition of From Poverty to Power has been fully revised and now includes an in-depth analysis of the human impact of the global financial and food crises. From Poverty to Power, 2nd Edition argues that a radical redistribution of power, opportunities, and assets, rather than traditional models of charitable or government aid, is required to break the cycle of poverty and inequality. Active citizens and effective states are driving this transformation. Why active citizens? Because people living in poverty must have a voice in deciding their own destiny and holding the state and the private sector to account. Why effective states? Because history shows that no country has prospered without a state structure that can actively manage the development process. There is now an added urgency: climate change. We need to build a secure, fair, and sustainable world within the limits set by scarce resources and ecological realities. The book is accompanied by a list of blog resources. The From Poverty to Power blog played a key role in shaping the second edition of the book. Selected posts have now been indexed thematically to create an effective list of background material that can be read alongside the book.
Full Planet, empty plates (Free download of Book) PDF With food scarcity driven by falling water tables, eroding soils, and rising temperatures, control of arable land and water resources is moving to center stage in the global struggle for food security. “In this era of tightening world food supplies, the ability to grow food is fast becoming a new form of geopolitical leverage. Food is the new oil,” Lester R. Brown writes. What will the geopolitics of food look like in a new era dominated by scarcity and food nationalism? Brown outlines the political implications of land acquisitions by grain-importing countries in Africa and elsewhere as well as the world’s shrinking buffers against poor harvests. With wisdom accumulated over decades of tracking agricultural issues, Brown exposes the increasingly volatile food situation the world is facing. With food scarcity driven by falling water tables, eroding soils, and rising temperatures, control of arable land and water resources is moving to center stage in the global struggle for food security. “In this era of tightening world food supplies, the ability to grow food is fast becoming a new form of geopolitical leverage. Food is the new oil,” Lester R. Brown writes. What will the geopolitics of food look like in a new era dominated by scarcity and food nationalism? Brown outlines the political implications of land acquisitions by grain-importing countries in Africa and elsewhere as well as the world’s shrinking buffers against poor harvests. With wisdom accumulated over decades of tracking agricultural issues, Brown exposes the increasingly volatile food situation the world is facing. PRAISE FOR FULL PLANET, EMPTY PLATES Named one of the top 10 books of 2012 by The Globalist. "Full Planet, Empty Plates arrived and I straight away set aside all my other activities in order to enjoy the latest wisdom. He certainly pours out his insights with vigour—and time after time he is bang on target."–Norman Myers "Though heavily packed with statistical information and evidences compiled from the work of hundreds of scientists, this book is an approachable resource for those who are interested in understanding food scarcity, regardless of their educational background."–Maira Niode, Omar Niode Foundation "Each subject is covered in enough detail and with enough supporting evidence to be clear, concise, and convincing. It is the clarity of argument and the brevity that makes this such a valuable book."–John Coulter, Sutainable Population Australia "As with all of Brown’s books, Full Planet, Empty Plates is very well-documented: over 150 data sets accompany the book. Brown fully explains the extent of food challenges in various regions of the globe, and the potential impacts based on environmental and socioeconomic factors in these regions."–Jeff McIntire-Strasburg, Sustainablog "This is a great little book that sums up the global situation, and ties it all together. Best explanation of how everything is interconnected. I wish every American would read this book!!!"–Diane Stewart, environmental activist "Brown presents his compelling arguments in straightforward language, buttressed with numerous facts, statistics and graphs."–Joseph Chamie, former director of the United Nations Population Division One of the top eco-books for the new year according to The Green Insider.
World on the Edge (Free download of Book) PDF We are facing issues of near-overwhelming complexity and unprecedented urgency. Our challenge is to think globally and develop policies to counteract environmental decline and economic collapse. The question is: Can we change direction before we go over the edge? PRAISE FOR WORLD ON THE EDGE "World on the Edge is brilliant. Author Lester Brown is one of humanity's greatest voices for the environment. In this volume, he presents the reader with a clear prescription for restoring sanity to our relationship with the biosphere. Highest recommendation."—Geoffrey Holland, Author, The Hydrogen Age "This is the ultimate survival guide for our species. Lester Brown plots a path around and beyond the looming environmental abyss with courage, compassion and immense wisdom." —Jonathan Watts, Asia Environment Correspondent for The Guardian and author of When A Billion Chinese Jump "No one is better informed than Lester Brown of the multi-faceted crisis facing our planet. And no one has spelt out so clearly how our civilisation could be saved from falling 'over the edge' while there is—hopefully—still just time." —John Rowley, founder/editorwww.peopleandplanet.net "Lester Brown has produced another 'planetary survey' book that tells us how to get off the wrecking train we are on by courtesy of a dozen environmental assaults such as climate change. The better news (and there’s plenty) is that turning problems into opportunities generally puts money into our pockets." —Norman Myers, 21st Century School, University of Oxford "World on Edge details the vice closing around us: a quadruple squeeze of global warming and shortages in food, water and energy. Then it explains the path out—and how little time we have left to take that path. Got anything more important to read than that?" —Peter Goldmark, former head of the Port authority of New York and New Jersey, President of the Rockefeller Foundation, and CEO of the International Herald Tribune "The world is a much more hopeful place because of the work and life of Lester Brown. World on the Edge should be read by everyone who wants to see a better life for their children, which is just about everybody." —Ted Glick, Policy Director of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network "Brown understands well the precariousness of human civilization ...[and] expresses it in patient and telling detail that addresses the intelligence and humanity of the reader." —Bryan Walker on Celsias.com "[World on the Edge] manages to cover both the grand sweep of global trends and the fine detail of some of the ideas being developed in response.” —Ed Crooks, Financial Times “Reading World on the Edge brings topics ranging from crop failures to state failures together in a way that no series of blog posts could…Brown draws these connections with both scientific rigor and the patience of a committed teacher.” —Jeff McIntire-Strasburg,Sustainablog.org "It is the most interesting book I have ever read and inspires me to do something immediate to save our civilization." —Hanh Lien, translator for the Vietnamese edition ofWorld on the Edge
This report gives an overview of the arts and health field, with particular reference to the UK and New Zealand. It provides a review of the evidence for the benefits of the arts to health, as well as the policy context of commissioning arts and health initiatives. It also highlights the potential role arts can play within professional education contexts (for example within medical training) as well as within therapy, healthcare and community settings. It includes case studies and subjective reflections on how the arts can interact with health and wellbeing, and also suggests ways forward for development of the arts in support of culture, health and wellbeing.
This discussion paper is an attempt to lay out a path toward a more sustainable society. It introduces several principles of sustainable well-being that meet the key sustainability challenges of advanced societies. Taken together, these principles form a vision of a sustainable well-being society. In addition, the paper analyzes the changing role of government in the transition towards sustainability.
Resilience is often understood simply as the ability to “bounce back” from a single disaster like a hurricane or earthquake. This survey commissioned by Post Carbon Institute found that leading US municipalities already have a much more sophisticated understanding of resilience involving economic, energy, and social challenges—and they're putting it into action through policies, regulations, and programs.
Good Living cannot be improvised, it must be planned. Good Living is the style of life that enables happiness and the permanency of cultural and environmental diversity; it is harmony, equality, equity and solidarity. It is not the quest for opulence or infinite economic growth.
Conventional development thinking emphasises economic growth over human wellbeing and ignores care as a public good that sustains and reproduces society and on which markets depend for their functioning. Our alternative is an economic system that reflects and places a value on equitable relations between women and men. We challenge commonly held assumptions about how the economy works – assumptions that in this time of global crisis risk bringing greater misery and impoverishment for those who can least protect themselves from collapsing markets. We propose development policies and programmes that can immediately start to address the interconnected concerns of women as producers, employees and carers with positive effect for individual, family and social wellbeing. In addition, philanthropic foundations – with their track record of facilitating new an challenging ideas – can facilitate the world’s most important debate about shaping an economy for people rather than people for the economy.