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The New Zealand Treasury's Living Standards Framework (LSF) is a guide for thinking about good economic, environmental and social policy in an integrated way - policy that aims to enhance individual and communal wellbeing on a sustained basis. This paper presents an evolving stylised model (one possible model) for the LSF; it is work in progress. The model is constructed by weaving together threads from the wellbeing, sustainable development and endogenous economic growth literatures. Its primary aim is to capture all key attributes of the LSF in a unified model. In doing so, I wish to identify the domain of a public policy that aims to enhance collective intergenerational wellbeing, highlight the key complementarities and tradeoffs that we face as a society in this pursuit, and explore the policy options and levers available to the policy makers to relax these tradeoffs and exploit the complementarities to the same end.
I wish to thank the following individuals for their comments and feedback on the first version of this paper - without in any way implying their endorsement: Jean-Pierre Andre, Joey Au, Geoff Bertram, Hilary Blake, Romina Boarini, Jonathan Boston, Nick Carroll, Kristie Carter, Andrew Coleman, Diane Coyle, Eric Crampton, Paul Dalziel, Shamubeel Eaqub, Brian Easton, Hans-Jurgen Engelbrecht, Lew Evans, Roger Fairclough, Martin Fukac, David Galt, Margaret Galt, Arthur Grimes, Oliver Hartwich, Gary Hawke, Seamus Hogan, Andrew Jackson, Adam Jaffe, Jacek Krawczyk, Robert MacCulloch, Wayne Mills, Jamie Murray, Patrick Nolan, Les Oxley, Weshah Razzak, Chris Ritchie, Paul Rodway, James Roumasset, Michael Ryan, Grant Scobie, Graham Scott, Conal Smith, Robert Stratford, Adolph Stroombergen, Ken Warren, Bryce Wilkinson, John Yeabsley. I also benefited from discussions at the New Zealand Treasury's Living Standards Group meetings and two workshops, one at the New Zealand Treasury and the other at the New Zealand Productivity Commission.
The views, opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this Working Paper are strictly those of the author(s). They do not necessarily reflect the views of the New Zealand Treasury or the New Zealand Government. The New Zealand Treasury and the New Zealand Government take no responsibility for any errors or omissions in, or for the correctness of, the information contained in these working papers. The paper is presented not as policy, but with a view to inform and stimulate wider debate.