To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what use his Department has made of the National Wellbeing Index introduced by the Office for National Statistics in formulating policy since the introduction of that Index in 2011; and what policies his Department has introduced to improve national wellbeing as defined in that Index since 2010.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) is measuring National Wellbeing, not as an index but through a framework of 41 indicators which capture social progress around important aspects of life for individuals, communities and the nation. The statistics are experimental and as such we should not expect to have examples of major policies that have been heavily influenced by the well-being data at this stage.
Since the introduction of the ONS framework for measuring National Wellbeing in 2011, DCMS has worked closely with the ONS to introduce sport and culture participation measures within ONS’ national well-being headline measures for adults (May 2013). In January this year, measures of sport and culture were also included within ONS’ initial national child well-being measures. DCMS’ National Statistic ‘Taking Part’, on culture and sport engagement, has measured subjective well-being since 2005-06. In 2012 ONS’ subjective well-being questions were also added to support further analysis of well-being impacts.
Our policies of ‘Getting more people playing sport’ and ‘Supporting vibrant and sustainable arts and culture’ are directly linked to ONS’ national well-being measurement. DCMS continues to work to better understand and consider the impact of its sectors and policy on people’s well-being across a number of the domains in ONS’ national well-being measures including health, education, crime and unemployment. For example, in our recently released reports on ‘Quantifying the Social Impacts of Culture and Sport1, and ‘Quantifying and Valuing the Wellbeing Impacts of Culture and Sport2.