New Zealand’s Wellbeing Budget

For the 7th edition of the Social Learning Platform, we welcomed Frances Brockie from the New Zealand Mission to the European Union (EU) to learn more about New Zealand’s wellbeing budget. New Zealand was the first country to focus their budget on promoting the wellbeing of their citizens.

Francis first provided a general overview of New Zealand’s economy: the GDP growth is around 3-4% every year, the unemployment rate is rather low (4%) and also government debt is comparably low (around 20% of the GDP). However, she also highlighted that inequalities are growing, that homelessness has almost doubled since 2001 and that mental health problems and child poverty are widespread.

Aimed at circumventing these worrying trends, the government created a Living Standard Framework, which is based on 12 domains of current wellbeing:

  1. Civic engagement and governance
  2. Cultural identity
  3. Environment
  4. Health
  5. Housing
  6. Income and consumption
  7. Jobs and earnings
  8. Knowledge and skills
  9. Time use
  10. Safety and security
  11. Social connections
  12. Subjective wellbeing

The wellbeing budget of New Zealand and more information on the different domains to measure wellbeing can be found here.