(26 June 2014) – The OECD has just launched a regional well-being website based on an interactive map covering the Organisation’s 34 member countries. It rates 362 sub-national regions with a relative score out of 10 in eight categories: income, health, safety, services, civic engagement, education, jobs and environment.
Life expectancy, air quality, safety and other indicators of well-being can vary dramatically within countries, depending on which region you live in. Looking beyond national averages is vital to get an accurate picture of quality of life and to guide local government policy.
Indicators reveal large disparities between regions, for instance:
- In the UK, Northern Ireland has the cleanest air but the lowest voter turnout. Scotland has the shortest life expectancy, 3 years and 4 months less than southeast England.
- In the US, people in Hawaii live six years longer than those in Mississippi, the same difference in life expectancy as that between the US and Mexico.
- Australia is the most unequal OECD country in terms of how household income varies from one region to another, while Austrian regions see the least variation in pay.