The very first Australian Social Progress Index (SPI) was released in late February of this year in conjunction with our partners at the Centre for Social Impact. It maps the social progress of the eight states and territories of Australia, the largest country in Oceania. We are elated to support the provision of social performance indicators that are independent of economic factors such as Gross Domestic Product (GDP) or income.
In the words of our CEO, Michael Green, “We know that GDP is flawed. It ignores the environment. It counts bombs and prisons as progress. It can’t count happiness or community. And it has nothing to say about fairness or justice.”
The Australian SPI provides consistent and impactful information on Basic Human Needs, Foundations of Wellbeing, and Opportunity for all of the people in the states and territories of the country. This data is publicly available and tracked over time, allowing progress, and interventions that support it, to be more fully understood.
“The purpose of the SPI is to ensure a clear, singular vision of what social progress looks like in Australia and encourage and support governments to see the gaps and commit to funding and outcomes solutions.” – Professor Kristy Muir, Chief Executive of the Centre for Social impact.
The Australian Capital Territory has ranked 1st on the on the SPI for every year that data has been available (since 2015). Other territories and states—specifically Western Australia and the Northern Territory—have struggled relative to their peers. The Northern Territory has been the lowest ranking state or territory in social progress across all years of the index. However, it ranks well on Environmental Quality and Inclusiveness. Interestingly, some of the biggest areas for social progress improvement across the country are Environmental Quality, and Access to Information and Communications.
These findings provide critical insight into the lived experience of people across Australia. By using well-organized and digestible data to make informed decisions and track change over time, leaders across society can accelerate the pace of meaningful, equitable advancement.
“We are delighted to see the first-ever Australian Social Progress Index released by our partners at the Centre for Social Impact. We look forward to seeing the Index in action, and hope to see Australia’s peers in the G20 and the Asia-Pacific region follow its example in directly measuring social progress.” – Michael Green, CEO for the Social Progress Imperative
As always, we strive to turn data into impact. To learn more about how the Centre for Social Impact has partnered with us to do just that in Australia, visit: https://amplify.csi.edu.au/social-progress-index/