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Measuring human well-being in Thailand : a normative social choice approach
journal contributionposted on 2006-05-01, 00:00 authored by Matthew ClarkeMatthew Clarke
Numerous methods exist within the literature to measure human well-being. A limitation of some approaches however is that they fail to explicitly consider society's views, choices and preferences on how human well-being should be defined. It is possible though to explicitly incorporate society's value judgements in defining and measuring human well-being through normative social choice theory. Normative social choice theory reflects the views, opinions and perspectives of societies of differing economic and social circumstances so that measures of human well-being retain their relevance for public policy makers in those countries. This paper reviews two indicators based on this theory for Thailand over the 25 year period, 1975-1999. The first indicator focuses on certain hierarchical needs and the second is a measure of adjusted national income. It is concluded that both measures provide important insights.