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Hind Al Soulia - Riyadh - BERLIN — In January 2020, the Global Solutions Initiative (GSI) presented the Recoupling Dashboard. The Recoupling Dashboard is a proposal for a new research tool of wellbeing that includes not only a measurement for economic prosperity, but also environmental sustainability and social prosperity through agency and solidarity.
The so-called Think20 (T20), a network of international think tanks and official engagement group to the G20, has recently appealed to the G20 to adopt this new way of measuring wellbeing.
Dr. Markus Engels, secretary general of the GSI, stated: "Without a new understanding of how we define prosperity and economic growth, we will neither effectively combat pandemics, climate change nor global poverty.
“The effects of economic growth on the environment, society and the individual must therefore become the focus of attention when assessing wellbeing."
With the Recoupling Dashboard, the authors Prof. Dennis J. Snower, president of the Global Solutions Initiative, and Dr. Katharina Lima de Miranda, researcher at the Kiel Institute for the World Economy, have proposed a new research tool that is much more comprehensive than the gross domestic product (GDP) that has been established for decades.
The Recoupling Dashboard’s approach sheds light on the decoupling of economic growth from societal prosperity and provides an empirical basis for mobilizing action in government, business and civil society to promote a recoupling of economic and social progress.
Dr. Katharina Lima de Miranda argues: "Measuring growth and prosperity via GDP was flawed from the outset and did not adequately reflect the social and economic reality.
“In view of societal fragmentation, climate change and digitization, a more comprehensive measurement of prosperity, such as the one presented for discussion through the Recoupling Dashboard, is more than overdue."
In a statement on social development measurement, the researchers of the T20 point out that growth alone does not necessarily mean a general increase in wellbeing for the community.
Therefore, the social and societal impacts would need to be taken into account to a much greater extent in the corresponding measurement.
This rethinking is also taking place in business. Prof. Marc Fleurbaey, Global Solutions Fellow and Research director at the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS), pointed out: “It is crucial to promote responsible behavior in the private sector by enhancing transparency.
“This can be achieved through harmonizing norms of reporting on environmental, social and governance impacts, incentivizing socially and environmentally-oriented repurposing of corporations, and enforcing inclusive governance toward a stakeholder-value approach.”
Many companies and industry initiatives have already initiated a discourse. For example, the Value Balancing Alliance is working on a model for measuring value contributions for environment, society and economy with the support of the GSI.
At the Global Solutions Summit 2020, Peter Bakker, president and CEO of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, and Bob Moritz, chairman of PwC International, discussed in detail the need for changes in economies and companies for a sustainable post-COVID-19 world.
About the Recoupling Dashboard
To stop the fragmentation of our societies and to shape a sustainable economy, we require more than Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and more than shareholder value as guides for governments and businesses.
Measuring wellbeing in the 21st century must also take into consideration social solidarity and personal agency, as well as environmental sustainability.
Prof. Dennis J. Snower and Dr. Katharina Lima de Miranda have developed the first-ever Recoupling Dashboard, a new instrument for measuring the wellbeing of societies. — SG
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