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Publication of ‘Understanding Life in Ireland: The Well-being Framework 2023’

The Government published ‘Understanding Life in Ireland: The Well-being Framework 2023’. The Report provides this year’s analysis of the 35 indicators, across eleven dimensions, in the Government’s Well-being Framework.

Overall, it shows that Ireland’s performance is positive across ten of the 11 well-being framework dimensions with only one dimension, the Environment, Climate and Biodiversity dimension, showing a negative performance. A new focus on equality in this year’s analysis also shows that of the 11 dimensions, two had particularly large differences between groups. These were Housing and the Built Environment, and Income and Wealth.

This is the second year an analysis report on progress under the Well-being Framework has been published by Government. This report is now an annual contribution to the Budget process, and supports a broader discussion of the impacts of budgetary decisions. It will feature at next week’s National Economic Dialogue and at other important points in the Budgetary cycle, as the well-being initiative is integrated across Government.

Ireland’s Well-being Framework provides policy-makers, Government and the Irish people with a more holistic way of thinking about how Ireland is doing as a country, with its focus on quality of life, with a particular emphasis on equality and sustainability across economic, environmental and social issues.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said, “the development of a Well-being Framework is a major new initiative of this Government and is modelled on best practice from other countries. We know that no single measure can accurately capture how we are doing as a country. By bringing together economic, social and environmental statistics in an integrated way, this framework helps us to assess where we are and to make better choices and decisions in future. It shows that Ireland is doing well when it comes to most things when we compare ourselves with the past and with other countries. We should never lose sight of the fact that Ireland is one of the best countries in the world in which to live, grow old, raise a family, pursue a career or run a business. It also shows that there is plenty of room for improvement too.”

“This year’s report shows that Ireland is on the right track as a country making solid progress in most areas but there is still much work to do. There is always more work to do. We are committed to making use of the Well-being Framework across Government as we look to improve the quality of life for our citizens. The work of the new Child Poverty and Well-being Unit in my Department will also make a difference especially for children and their families.”

The Minister for Finance, Michael McGrath TD, said, “this report provides a clear sense of the social progress we have made and challenges we face in building a more sustainable economy and inclusive society. By incorporating a diverse set of well-being dimensions, the Framework provides an important lens for us to embed well-being considerations into our decision-making processes and so develop a more long-term and joined-up approach to policy-making.”

The Minister for Public Expenditure, NDP Delivery & Reform, Paschal Donohoe TD, joined in welcoming the Report, “I would like to welcome this publication of Understanding Life in Ireland: The Well-being Dashboard 2023, which provides valuable insights into how the lives of people living in Ireland are progressing over time, and how we compare with other countries. The information generated through the Well-being Framework can be utilised at all levels and across all Government Departments, to improve the design of public policy and develop effective and sustainable public services that continually improve the lives of our people.”

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