• Contrasting budgets in Australia and New Zealand

    Stephen Bartos     |      May 25, 2021

    On the surface there are similarities between the recent budgets in Australia and New Zealand, but differences emerge in how the budgets are framed and what they try to deliver.

  • Measuring progress and wellbeing in Australia

    Stephen Bartos     |      December 18, 2019

    Attempts to measure wellbeing in Australia, and factor it into public policy have stalled, but wellbeing measures are being used with success in Iceland, New Zealand and elsewhere, offering hope their adoption will rekindle interest in this country.

  • Measuring our quality of life — why is the world looking beyond GDP?

    Stephen Bartos     |      November 1, 2011

    When the term Gross Domestic Product (GDP) was developed in the 1930s the market value of all goods and services produced within a country was considered to be the best indicator of a country’s standard of living. Now it’s widely recognised that other factors have to be taken into account when looking at a country’s success as a happy, safe place to live. Prof Stephen Bartos, advocates exploring how the ‘economics of happiness’ can be used to inform national policy.

    Gross domestic product per capita is a useful, measure of national well-being from an economic perspective.

    The severity of the 1930s Great Depression highlighted the need for a tool to assist policy makers to understand the state of their economies, and most importantly whether the policies they had in place were effective.

  • Measuring Australia’s economic and social progress

    Stephen Bartos     |      September 8, 2011

    Australian measures of life satisfaction have declined in recent years, despite solid growth in GDP.  The Global Access Partners Task Force on Progress in Society, established following the 2010 National Economic Review Summit, has been exploring how the ‘economics of happiness’ could be used to inform national policy.

    Since last year, a group of senior public sector, private sector and academic thinkers, brought together under the auspices of Sydney-based public policy think tank Global Access Partners (GAP), has been addressing the issue of measures of progress.