Challenges, Needs and Risks in Defining Wellbeing Indicators

  • Filomena MagginoEmail author
Part of the Social Indicators Research Series book series (SINS, volume 60)


Actually, crossing Alex’s scientific life corresponded also to crossing the renewed worldwide debate on the role of social indicators in promoting the wellbeing of individual and nations. My contribution to this collection re-considers some reflections I already wrote on measuring progress of societies.

Since several decades, many researchers all over the world have been continuously working on defining concepts and measures able to measure and monitor the wellbeing of nations.

Actually what emerges clearly is that the change of paradigm introduces several methodological implications in identifying indicators. Actually, monitoring wellbeing through indicators introduces some issues representing at the same time a challenge (given by the complexity), a need (represented by the relativization) and a risk (given by the over-reductionism).

This work, fruit of previous reflections, aims at clarifying and disentangling these issues by remarking that the key allowing for the proper identification of new measures lies in the players’ (statisticians, researchers, analysts, policy makers, and so on) capacity and awareness in considering complexity, avoiding over-reductionism and investigating relativization.

This contribution to this collection represents actually a small sign of tribute from my side to Alex.


Measuring wellbeing of nations Indicators of wellbeing Quality of life 


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© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Dipartimento di Statistica, Informatica, Applicazioni “G. Parenti” (DiSIA)Università degli Studi di FirenzeFirenzeItaly

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