The OECD has just published “How Was Life? Global Well-being since 1820”. The report presents the first systematic evidence on long-term trends in global well-being since 1820 for 25 major countries and 8 regions in the world covering more than 80% of the world’s population.
The historical evidence reviewed in the study is organized around 10 dimensions of well-being: capita GDP, real wages, educational attainment, life expectancy, height, personal security, political institutions, environmental quality, income inequality and gender inequality.
The Composite indicator of well-being presented in this report indicates that progress in well-being has been widespread since the early 20th century, with the possible exception of Sub Saharan Africa. The evidence presented in this report also suggests that since the 1970s between country inequality in composite well-being has been lower than in GDP per capita, while being more pronounced in the period before.
Overall, this book collects, summarizes and critically discusses our current knowledge on long term trends in global well-being over the past two centuries.
The full OECD How Was Life? Global Well-being since 1820 report is available for the IESE Community here.