The Measuring National Well-being debate highlighted the importance of developing measures for children's and young people’s well-being. Findings from the debate (407.1 Kb Pdf) showed the need to capture children's and young people’s well-being in its own right, so that their views could be heard.
ONS is working with a wide range of stakeholders interested in the well-being of children and young people, including government departments, charity organisations and academics.
The aim is to identify and develop subjective measures of well-being that will complement some of the objective measures that ONS already collects.
This will hopefully lead to harmonised questions that will enable (like-for-like) comparisons of children's and young people's well-being at a national level. Importantly, this will also mean that comparisons can be made at an international level.
By involving children and young people directly in measuring national well-being, we will strengthen the UK's commitment to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC).
The Convention states that every child has the right to have a say in all matters affecting them and to have their views taken seriously. The UNCRC also sets out the principles and standards through which children’s rights and well-being are promoted and protected. This makes it important both symbolically and in practice to measure children's and young people's well-being.
The measures that we aim to develop will need to be robust enough to support relevant policies. The measures should therefore:
enable the collection of reliable information about children’s well-being and the factors that contribute to it
provide information that will enable comparisons within the UK and with other developed countries
allow findings from the data and surveys to drive policy prioritisation and to improve outcomes for children and young people
It is important that this work includes all children in the UK, including those that are not living at home with their parents.
For the latest articles and reports on national well-being, see our publications page.