Measuring what matters

For further information, please click here

For two and half years the World Future Council has been active in the BRAINPOoL project, working to assist the development of a new kind of economy, that is more equitable, more sustainable and more effectively delivers human well-being. During this time we have been looking at the barriers and opportunities around the use of ‘beyond GDP indicators’ in policy making.

These ‘alternative indicators’ aim to correct the many omissions and shortcomings of ‘gross domestic product’ (GDP) and demonstrate a broader view of the ways in which societies are progressing (or failing) on issues such as health, education, biodiversity protection and equality. These indicators can help governments focus in a more joined up way on what really matters: they can help to create a more informed debate about where a society actually is, where it wants to head, and – crucially – give clear guidance on the choices we need to make if we are to get there.

Over the course of the project we have been:

The results

Based on these findings we developed a number of recommendations including the need for a compelling alternative ‘Beyond GDP’ story that resonates with the public and can effectively respond to the current economic belief that efficient markets and growth at all costs deliver the best results. A second important conclusion was the need to develop a range of policies that fit this new narrative and which can deliver equality, environmental sustainability, good jobs and a better quality of life.

If you would like more information these conclusions are discussed in the project’s Final Report or in a shorter Summary and Recommendations document.



We are currently working to build a coalition to take this work forward, focusing on the policy shifts that are needed to deliver a truly sustainable economy.

Contact: alistair.whitby [at]

Further studies, articles and results can be viewed at:


To keep up-to-date on the latest WFC work on Beyond GDP and tweets related to creating a new economy follow @AlistairWhitby


"Yes moko, just like the sea which has to move its tides
so we can collect Kaimoana at certain times.
Rules give harmony to our lives
so we live with
minimum conflicts.
Working in harmony with others, ae moko, it’s nature’s
act of saying,
Let us make music all together
if not in reality — then make it your dream."

WFC Councillor Pauline Tangiora

Future Justice… about thinking and acting differently, based on respect, dignity and mutual trust

…considers not just what is happening now, but the effects of our actions in the years, decades and centuries to come

… is a means of creating new rules for how we live and work, pass laws and run countries

…is the giving of rights to the poorest, the weakest, the ignored, to the planet and to the other living creatures we share it with

…is a protection for all the people yet to be born,  whose lives we are blighting before they have even started

…is about what we do now.  Our actions today will determine the conditions of life for centuries to come