Economic Indicators
  • Net job growth
  • Employment diversity
  • Number of jobs with benefits
  • Work required to support basic needs

Talking Points
  • Traditional economic indicators have narrow focus
  • Traditional indicators are necessary but not sufficient
  • Sustainability indicators show links to society and environment

Here are four examples of economic indicators. Net job growth is a very common measure of economic progress. However, it's not how many new jobs a community creates that is important, it's the type of jobs:
  • jobs that match the skills of the available workforce
  • jobs that provide benefits
  • jobs that pay reasonable wages so people can afford basic needs
Economic indicators need to show the links between the economy and a healthy society. Additional examples of traditional and better economic indicators can be found on the Economic indicators page of Maureen Hart's Indicators of Sustainability web site.

(Note to instructor: Rather than just telling participants what makes the second two indicators better than the first two, engage participants by asking them to explain the differences among these indicators. Make the discussion interactive by asking participants for their ideas for good indicators in these areas. Have the facilitator or helper write down the indicators that participants suggest. For each one, ask the participant what the links are with the various categories of issues.)
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