Section 2 of the Irish Budget, announced the Department of Finance in October 2020, was entitled ‘Moving from GDP to Wellbeing’. The section describes the limitations of GDP, acknowledges the limitations of economic statistics alone to accurately reflect the wellbeing of a population, and introduces the idea of having a national wellbeing measurement in the country as a necessary alternative measure to ensure the drive of economic growth does not eclipse progress towards higher living standards for all.
The Programme for Government 2020 outlines the intention to develop new measures of wellbeing and includes a Wellbeing Dashboard designed to inform the budget process, with a commitment to move towards SDG budgeting.
This programme takes into account lessons learned from examples of wellbeing measures and initiatives in other countries, including New Zealand, the Netherlands, Canada, the UK and the OCED’s Wellbeing Framework. The development of these measures of wellbeing will be guided by group of experts from across civil service, academia, and the private sector, with the aim to bring Ireland in line with the other European and OECD countries.
The Budget highlights takeaways from the OECD’s How’s life in Ireland Reportwhich outlines Ireland relative strengths and weaknesses in wellbeing compared to the OECD countries.
While this programme is new, Ireland has been undertaking equality and green budgeting measures for some time .
Gender budgeting underpins Ireland’s equality budgeting work: departments are asked to set targets against nine dimensions of equality. Ireland’s tax-benefits model includes a gender module. These efforts are led by an Equality Budgeting Experts Advisory Group encompassing representatives from across government agencies and delegates from civil society and academia.
Better understanding of gendered impacts has led to investments in childcare and parental care; support for art and culture for women; efforts to boost women’s participation in sport; apprenticeships for women; research grants for women; smoking reduction projects; work to broaden access to education; efforts to end energy poverty; and so on.
The equality work in Ireland’s budgets sits alongside poverty proofing of government policies. This assesses policy proposals according to their impact on key social outcomes, using a social impact assessment (SIA) framework that looks at the demographics of people receiving public services and disaggregates households and by income, economic status, household composition, and age. These assessments are released the same day as the budget.

Find out more:

In 2010, when President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono saw that despite rapid GDP growth, over 30 million Indonesian’s still remained in poverty, he instigated a series of institutional and strategic reforms to improve wellbeing in Indonesia. Indonesia’s National Medium-Term Development Plan (NMTD) 2010-2014 outlined that the ultimate aim of development must be an improvement in the quality of life for all Indonesian citizens. One of the priority policy goals was to reduce the poverty rate to 8% by the end of the 5-year period.

In order to achieve this poverty target, the President issued a decree for greater institutional alignment and coordination. To accelerate poverty reduction, he called for

1) well-designed, systematic, and comprehensive steps and approaches;

2) coordination amongst all stakeholders (government, private sector, and communities) in policy formulation and implementation;

3) improved targeting, policy harmonization, monitoring and evaluation; and

4) strengthened institutions at the national, regional, and local levels.

In order to achieve these aims, the Government established a National Team for Acceleration of Poverty Reduction (Tim Nasional Percepatan Penanggulangan Kemiskinan, or TNP2K) with the mandate to harmonise all poverty reduction programs and activities across ministries and institutions and to guide and support their implementation.

The TNP2K reported directly to the President and consisted of ministers, community representatives, businesses, and other civil society stakeholders. Given the country’s drive towards decentralisation and greater local autonomy, the government also created coordinating teams for poverty reduction (TKPK) at the provincial, district, and city levels who would manage and support coordination of poverty reduction efforts in their areas.

In order to harmonise and coordinate poverty reduction efforts across ministries and agencies, the TNP2K identified 4 major intervention areas in the economy that were critical for poverty reduction and grouped all programs into the following clusters:

I: Social assistance programs for households and families. Improve the wellbeing of poor families by increasing their access to basic services such as health, education, clean water, and sanitation.

II: Poverty reduction through community empowerment. Increase living standards in communities, build capacities, and develop opportunities for the poor.

III: Poverty reduction through empowerment of micro-enterprises. Provide financing and support to informal and micro-enterprises that are a vital source of employment and income in poor communities.

IV: Poverty reduction through government provision of basic services and/or through price interventions. This was a new area identified for policy action and included six major policy intervention areas in the economy for wellbeing: inexpensive housing; affordable public transportation; clean water; availability of electricity; improving welfare of fishermen; and improving welfare of urban poor communities.

The National Medium Term Development Plan (RPJMN, 2010‐2014) is its second phase of implementation through Indonesia’s National Long Term Development Plan (RPJPN 2005‐2025)

Find out more here.

Find out more:

Ben & Jerry’s is a pioneer in embedding social purpose into their business. The social enterprise operates on a three-part mission that aims to create linked prosperity for everyone that’s connected to the business: suppliers, employees, farmers, franchisees, customers, and neighbours alike.

Ben & Jerry’s has taken a stance on nearly every major social issue of the last three decades, ranging from same-sex marriage to criminal justice reform and from fair trade to campaign finance.

It’s also worked to reflect those values internally by sourcing ethical products throughout its supply chain and paying Vermont employees a liveable hourly wage. (The company starts its entry-level Vermont employees at $18.13 an hour ― $7.17 above the state’s minimum wage ― and allows workers to take home three pints of ice cream at the end of every workday.)

The company also stopped including criminal background checks in the first stage of its application process in 2015, in solidarity with a national campaign to remove the check box that typically appears on job applications asking about applicants’ criminal history.

Find out more here.

Find out more: