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Beyond GDP

Measuring progress, true wealth, and well-being

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EU Roadmap 2009

In August 2009, the European Commission released its policy paper “GDP and beyond: Measuring progress in a changing world” which is available in 22 languages. The paper fulfils the commitment made by the European Commission at the Beyond GDP conference to mould the ideas presented at the conference into a roadmap for action.

Five key actions

The Communication outlines an EU roadmap with five key actions to be undertaken now and in the near term. The five key actions support the Commission’s aims to develop indicators relevant to the challenges of today — ones that provide an improved basis for public discussion and policy-making.

The five key actions are:
  • Complementing GDP with highly aggregated environmental and social indicators
  • Near real-time information for decision-making
  • More accurate reporting on distribution and inequalities
  • Developing a European Sustainable Development Scoreboard
  • Extending National Accounts to environmental and social issues

Presentation event

The Communication “GDP and beyond” was presented and discussed with key stakeholders at an event on 8 September 2009, which was also streamed online. The speakers were Stavros Dimas (European Commission, download speech); Elisabet Falemo (Swedish EU Presidency); Aart de Geus (OECD); Pedro Diaz Muñoz (Eurostat); and Enrico Giovannini (Italian Statistical Institute). Following the speaker presentations, Karl Falkenberg (European Commission) chaired a discussion session with the stakeholders in attendance.

Documents to support media coverage

The discussion on how to measure progress is gathering momentum worldwide. It is being discussed by all levels of policy makers and also attracts increasing media attention. Old convictions are being challenged by new findings and new political priorities in a time of economic and financial crisis, climate change, demographic change, and globalisation.

The press toolbox includes information and materials to support media coverage.