Well-being in Vanuatu

Submitted by admin on 8. July 2021 - 14:03

Well-being in Vanuatu

Vanuatu National Statistics Office
issues new report

One of the most enlightened countries in the world, Vanuatu in the South Pacific, has just published a new report Well-being In Vanuatu, a significant government attempt to redefine well-being, particularly in a Melanesian context. The report is the work of several years of planning, fieldwork, data processing and analysis by the Vanuatu National Statistics Office (VNSO) following the 2016 Mini Census. It attempts to look at well-being more holistically, framing it around topics of happiness, access, knowledge, health, and social resilience.

This important initiative of Vanuatu to establish and mainstream indicators of well-being that incorporate Melanesian values into the policy arena deserves to be known more widely. Some of the indicators developed in the pilot study from 2010-2012 have become key monitoring and evaluation indicators for the National Sustainable Development Plan (NSDP), securing their collection through 2030.

The report was launched on 7 July 2021, creating opportunities for communicating information effectively back to the rightful owners - the people of Vanuatu, requiring creative outreach approaches in the near future. Additional information, technical documentation, analysis and resources from the 2019-2020 NSDP Baseline Survey can be found on the VNSO website at: https://vnso.gov.vu/index.php/en/nsdp-baseline-survey.

The VNSO is establishing methods and standards for well-being data collection in Vanuatu. It has now created a position of statistician responsible for the culture and justice sectors in its Social and Environment Statistics Unit. It is also supporting the good work of the Vanuatu Indigenous Land Defense Desk (VILDD) and its Well-being Officer, whose outreach keeps dialogue on emerging issues in Vanuatu communities focused and rooted in cultural values. The VNSO is working to support the data management needs of the culture sector in particular, towards a cultural information management system that meets the needs of those that are tasked with preserving and promoting cultural diversity and the arts, as well as those with functions that require reporting against national and even international goals.

Many indicators that are now prominent in the Vanuatu development framework are relatable across the Pacific and may be relevant in other countries with strong traditions and indigenous cultures. If the work Vanuatu is doing can help influence other countries to be more concerned with the well-being of their people rather than focused on endless GDP growth, that is the future we want to see, with balanced and well-being centered governance and development.

You can download the full report at: https://vnso.gov.vu/images/Pictures/NSDP_Baseline/Analysis/Wellbeing_Re….

Based on a message from Mr. Jamie Tanguay, author of the report and Project Coordinator for Melanesian Well-being Indicators, Vanuatu National Statistics Office. See also "Reweaving the Ecological Mat".

Last updated 8 July 2021