Community Indicators for Your Community

Real, lasting community change is built around knowing where you are, where you want to be, and whether your efforts are making a difference. Indicators are a necessary ingredient for sustainable change. And the process of selecting community indicators -- who chooses, how they choose, what they choose -- is as important as the data you select.

The Jacksonville Community Council (JCCI) understands indicators and community change, with more than 25 years of producing the annual Quality of Life Progress Report for Jacksonville and the Northeast Florida region, and two decades of helping other communities develop their own sustainable indicators projects. JCCI consultants give you the information you need to measure progress, identify priorities for action, and assess results.

I'd like to talk with you personally about how we can help. E-mail me at
ben@jcci.org, call (904) 396-3052, or visit CommunityWorks for more information. From San Antonio to Siberia, we're ready and willing to assist.


Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Measuring Happiness and Public Policy

A new article from Miller-McCune approaches the question of measuring happiness from a different direction. In Maybe the Government Can Make You Happier. Should It? Ryan Blitstein reviews the work being done globally, including Bhutan's Gross National Happiness index, the Beyond GDP conference, the Local Wellbeing Project, the Happy Planet Index, and more. (His review is pretty good -- he starts back with Epicurus.) Then he discusses the political framework that tends to focus on consumption rather than well-being.

His conclusion? "Still, there is no real U.S. hub for happiness policy."

Read the article, and let me know what you think. Are we missing the boat in the U.S. by not pursuing happiness indicators more aggressively? What lessons should we be learning from the amount of research being conducted?

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