What is the standard of living?
The standard of living measures our material welfare. The baseline measure is real national output per head of population or real GDP per capita or gross national income per capita
| “Equity, dignity, happiness, sustainability – these are all fundamental to our lives but absent in the GDP. Progress needs to be defined and measured in a way which accounts for the broader picture of human development and its context" |
Source: Helen Clarke, UNDP
Is real GDP per capita an accurate and relevant measure of our economic well-being?
National income data can be used to make cross-country comparisons. This requires
Problems in using national income statistics to measure living standards
Reasons why GDP data may give a distorted picture of living standards in a country:
Bill Gates on Alternative Measures of the Standard of Living
You will find more statistics at Statista
Imperfect measures of GDP should not be the only criteria by which economies are judged. India’s Amartya Sen, a Nobel Prize-winning economist, has correctly said that achieving other factors — he calls them capabilities — should play a prominent role in determining government policy. Some of these can be boiled down to outcomes in health, literacy and welfareFinancial Times, Leader Article, 17th February 2015
Moving away from GDP per capita – the case for median household incomes