Social Research Center - University of Iceland
Comparing Well-Being of Nations - An International Database
International Well-Being Index (WBI)
Data Bank for Comparing 29 nations
by Stefán Ólafsson
This data compilation and the resulting measures are a part of a research project comparing welfare states and welfare outcomes in modern societies. It was undertaken at the Social Research Center of the University of Iceland, which is a partner to a Nordic Center of Excellence in Welfare Research, devoted to reassessing the Nordic Welfare Model in an international and intra-Nordic comparison (
The goal is to create a multi-dimensional sociological measure of the well-being of modern nations, which allows further understanding of how well different nations and welfare states are succeeding in providing good qualities of life for their members. The focus of the present Well-Being Index is thus on welfare outcomes rather than welfare inputs, which can be taken to refer to welfare efforts or generosity (expenditures), welfare rights or welfare regime characteristics. Most comparative studies of welfare states have focused primarily on such welfare inputs. Comparing welfare inputs and well-being outcomes is of great importance for assessing the value and successes of differing national ways of pursuing progress in modern societies.
The index is based on 9 dimensions (sub-indices) and 69 variables. See more here on the structure of the index, methodology, data sources, inter-correlations of the 9 well-being dimensions, correlates of the Well-Being Index to other well-being indices and to other factors of general importance for well-being which are not included in the index itself.
2010 - Þjóðmálastofnun - Háskóli Íslands
Web Design: Stefán Andri Stefánsson