What is Progress?
How do we know if we're making progress?
We all want a better life, for ourselves and our children. We also care about the progress of our communities and our country. We like to think that we will leave a positive legacy for the generations that come after us. But how do we know if we, as a nation, are on the right track?
What does progress really mean? How do we decide what counts as progress? How can we measure how well we are succeeding?
By definition, the progress of a nation or a community is measured by how well it moves towards set goals and values. Until recently, most of the national conversations about our progress have been focused on economic growth as the key goal for Australia.
Now, human progress is increasingly being understood as much more complex than this, including the values that underpin our life together, goals that relate to our wellbeing as individuals and as communities, and the effective and sustainable use of our resources for the wellbeing of future generations.
Deciding what progress means for Australia and how to measure it isn’t simply a matter of policy for lawmakers or a technical question for experts. It’s a democratic question for all Australians. This is what the ANDI project is about. It is a community initiative to revitalise our democracy and engage all Australians in a national debate about our shared vision for Australia. Based on the idea of an ongoing national conversation about what kind of society we want to be, it will develop clear, ongoing measures of our progress towards that vision: an
Australian National Development Index.