As we look to decarbonise society, our leaders continue to focus on outdated metrics and an economic vision that fails to drive the social and environmental outcomes that actually matter to our shared wellbeing and future prosperity. The Thriving Places Index offers an alternative vision: one that looks beyond simplistic growth targets and instead at how we can deliver #realprogressforall.
Now in its sixth year, the Thriving Places Index (TPI) identifies the local conditions for wellbeing and measures whether they are being delivered fairly and sustainably, tracking how well we are growing our capacity to thrive in local areas across England and Wales. It is designed to provide a robust reporting framework and a guide to better policy and action to improve the conditions for wellbeing at a local level.
Created by our friends at the Centre for Thriving Places, the TPI aims to give a balanced and easily read ‘dashboard’ of information on the different elements that support those places to thrive. It is being used by communities, governments and funders around the UK and beyond as a compass to better decision making.
This wholistic approach to analysing the data behind our everyday lives is essential because, as Liz Zeidler, chief executive of Centre for Thriving Places, explains: “Our prevailing economic model is a root cause of this web of social and environmental crises. It does not account for nature, is blind to distribution of resources, and gives little or no ‘value’ to many of the things that are essential for our human, social and environmental resilience.”
The TPI makes it practical for local authorities to put into place a wellbeing economics approach – prioritising the things that matter to people and planet and working with the unique capabilities and challenges in each place.
The TPI 2022 is delivered as a partnership between Centre for Thriving Places and, in England, University of Birmingham’s Centre for Urban Wellbeing, and in Wales with Data Cymru. You can visit the index to see how your own local authority performs across a range of indices including green infrastructure, community cohesion and mental health.
Triodos Bank has backed the Thriving Places Index for a number of years because we know that how we spend money can help support the things people really need to positively influence their wellbeing. We also know that a measurement system that assumes economies can infinitely grow is having disastrous effects on our planet. Our financial system, and the current economic paradigm, are negatively impacting people and planet - but money can also be a powerful force for positive change.
To mark the launch of the 2022 index, Bevis Watts, chief executive of Triodos Bank UK, said:"The Thriving Places Index is a vital framework that shines a light on how well we are growing our capacity to thrive in local areas and communities. As a bank rooted in delivering positive social and environmental impact through the lending and investments we make, the index is an approach we endorse because it aligns well with our vision on how the economy should change."