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Archived: Genuine Progress Indicator

Supplemental Information

December 2016 Supplemental Report (click here)

Why is this a priority?

The Genuine Progress Indicator is an economic metric constructed from 26 individual indicators. GPI goes beyond other economic measures that track the amount that an economy produces, by looking at the social and environmental impacts of economic activity. It is a tool that lets us ask, and start to answer, this question:

What if we define economic success not by the money we spend and the goods we consume but by the quality of life we create?

How are we doing?

Washington's GPI has grown steadily since 1960, but since about 1980 that growth has occurred at a lower rate than the state's Gross Domestic Product. The gap between these two measures -- productivity and prosperity -- has widened, meaning that Washington's economic gains for the last few decades have not resulted in as great an increase in quality of life as gains made in earlier years.

Washington's GPI target is intended stop this gap from wideing further by having a goal for GPI growth to keep pace with GDP growth. The GPI target is therefore set based on an annual growth rate of 2.66%, which is the same targeted growth rate as for GDP.For 2013, the preliminary estimate is that the GPI grew at 2.5 percent, to $192.7 billion. This rate is close to, but slightly below, the targeted growth rate. However, continued improvement in underemployment and other GPI measures could increase the GPI's growth rate in 2014.

What are we working on?

As of December 2014, we have completed the initial development of the Washington GPI, and calculated its levels from 1960-2013 (preliminary). Our next task will be finalizing the 2013 GPI once all data is available, which should be completed by June 2015. In addition to being able to track the state's performance on this measure, we will eventually be able to show the GPI at the local level for communities within Washington.

For more information, visit http://www.commerce.wa.gov/about/Pages/GPI.aspx

How can you help?