“The Global Sustainable Competitiveness Ranking 2015 is topped by Iceland for a second year running, followed by the Scandinavian nations.
The Sustainable Competitiveness Index is based on a competitiveness model that tries to evaluate exactly this – the ability to sustain wealth creation by incorporating all relevant pillars of sustained growth and wealth creation: natural capital availability, resource efficiency, social cohesion, innovation and business capabilities, and government-led development direction. The Sustainable Competitiveness Index also integrates data trends over time to allow for a better expression of future development potential.
The results aim at serving as an alternative to the GDP, for academic, policy or investment decisions, based on current and future development prospects and risks of nations.”
—Global Sustainable Competitiveness Index 2015 (PDF), November 2015, SOLABILITY, Switzerland.
Commentary: Ron Robins
This is a terrific index concept. It needs to get more exposure to encourage governments, corporations and others further engaged in the sustainable competitiveness of their economies.
It’s interesting that the U.S.A. and the U.K. rank 41st and 48th respectively on this index while the Scandinavian countries dominate the top spots. The Scandinavian countries lead most alternative GDP indices as they are not only exceedingly high-income countries — but are top-tier performers on most other component measures as well.
The unique contribution that this index makes is the combination and weighting of its various components in endeavoring to predict the future direction of countries with respect to their total sustainability. Many countries might perform well on income measures but the sustainability and potential growth of those incomes with respect to the depletion and replenishment of their natural resources, social cohesion, etc., is wanting.
Also, countries like the U.K. and U.S.A. do relatively badly on this index because there’s a belief by its designers that governments should lead in all areas related to sustainability. Something that is politically difficult and unacceptable to many in the U.K. and America. Hence, China and Japan lead on this measure. Even Russia is ahead of the U.S.A. and U.K. on this measure — which probably raises some questions.
Nonetheless, this index is a valuable addition to alternate GDP indices.