New Study Looks At Living Standards Worldwide

By Fiona Moore, for 06 October, 2014

A new study co-produced by the OECD shows that there have been worldwide improvements in the quality of peoples' lives, despite marked differences in economic opportunities and growth.

The report, entitled How Was Life? Global Well-Being since 1820, was written by a team of economic historians. It brings together data from 25 countries in eight regions on real wages, gross domestic product per head, educational attainment, life expectancy, height (to indicate physical health and nutrition), personal security, political institutions, the environment, income, and gender equality. The report discusses how living standards have improved in these countries over the past two centuries to arrive at current levels.

The report finds that globalization has been a key factor that has contributed to wealth inequality. However, incomes have become more equal among the working population across the world.

Governments in less affluent economies are said to have invested heavily in improving the standard of health care and education to the benefit of their populations.

The report presents interesting findings on personal safety, with people living in some lower income nations said to fare better than some high income countries, such as the United States.

Also, while Europe and North America have made marked improvements in the area of gender equality over the past 60 years, the Middle East and North Africa, along with South and Southeast Asia, continue to lag behind.

Tags: Western Europe | Gross Domestic Product (GDP) | Australia | China | Health Care | Education | United States | Expats | Welfare | Europe | North America | Africa | Middle East |


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