1963-2013 - 50 years of Research for Social Change

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Back | Programme Area: Social Policy and Development

Expert meeting on Social Policy Index (SPI)

Date: 8 Dec 2006



United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD) organized an expert meeting on 8 December 2006 in Geneva to explore the feasibility and the appropriate methodology for the construction of a Social Policy Index (SPI). The meeting was attended by a group of selected experts from the field of Statistics, Economics, Econometrics, and Political Science.

A social policy index (SPI) is needed in order to better understand the social policy regimes within the broader economic and social structures of each country. It could also be used to classify countries in terms of their social policy regimes. An SPI will be a composite index measuring the social policy of each country. This is an input-based index that quantifies each country’s priorities in terms of social policy and development. There is a genuine desire for such an index by policy makers, experts, and the general public, as it would enable them to assess their country’s policy orientation and to compare it internationally. An SPI can also become a useful advocacy tool for policy makers.

The main objective of the meeting was to present the project proposal to the experts and explore the methodology for the construction of such an index. Project modalities, background papers, timeframe and output were also discussed.