The ‘Wicked Problem’ of Wellbeing: Theorising the Prospects for Policy Change

  • Ian Bache
  • Louise Reardon
Part of the Creative Economy book series (CRE)


In the past decade there has been an increasing focus at both national and international levels on the extent to which governments can improve the wellbeing of citizens. At the core of these developments has been concern with GDP as the dominant indicator of societal progress, leading to a plethora of initiatives that have sought alternative or complementary measures of progress. A pivotal moment in developments was the report of the influential ‘Stiglitz Commission’ (CMEPSP 2009), which argued for the use of subjective wellbeing (SWB) indicators alongside more widely used objective indicators of progress, such as employment rates and life expectancy. This feature of developments has proved highly controversial and the issues it raises are central to our discussion here.


Wicked Problem Order Change Policy Learning Policy Entrepreneur Measurement Agenda 
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Copyright information

© Springer Japan 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PoliticsUniversity of SheffieldSheffieldUK
  2. 2.Institute for Transport StudiesUniversity of LeedsLeedsUK

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