National Well-Being

At the request of the Coalition Government, the Office for National Statistics is working to develop new statistical measures of national well-being, covering quality of life and environmental and sustainability issues, as well as the traditional economic performance of the country.

To guide this process, the National Statistician has launched a debate and public consultation on national well-being. It will run until 15 April 2011. Views are sought on a variety of topics, among them the extent to which spirituality and religion matter to people and whether they should be reflected in national measures of well-being.

Input to this dialogue can be made in various ways, including by completing the consultation questionnaire and returning it by email or post, by contributing to a virtual debate website, or by attending workshops. Full details of how to get involved are available at:

http://www.ons.gov.uk/well-being

No faith leaders or faith experts seem to have been appointed to the membership of the Measuring National Well-Being Advisory Forum, which is mainly drawn from the ranks of government, business and academe. Nor, apparently, is the consultation attracting much attention in the faith media.

The BRIN source database – http://www.brin.ac.uk/sources – can be used to identify previous quantitative research into the religious aspects of well-being. Use keyword search terms such as ‘well being’, ‘well-being’ and ‘wellbeing’.


British Religion in Numbers: All the material published on this website is subject to copyright. We explain further here.

This entry was posted in Measuring religion, Official data, Religion in public debate and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to National Well-Being

  1. Clive Field says:

    A report by Joanne Evans on this national well-being debate (conducted between 25 November 2010 and 15 April 2011) was published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) on 25 July 2011 and is available at: http://www.statistics.gov.uk/articles/nojournal/sp-debate.pdf

    It summarizes responses made to the ONS consultation paper, either online, in focus groups or by other channels. In a second iteration of the accompanying questionnaire, just under one-third of respondents said that religion or spirituality mattered to them and should be included in national measures of well-being.

    Needless to say, and as ONS points out, the respondents to the debate did not necessarily constitute a nationally representative statistical sample.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.