Measuring what matters

This consultation process has now been completed. Submissions available

The government is committed to measuring what matters to improve the lives of all Australians.

Measuring what matters will help us better understand our economy and society while informing policy making.

Treasury is interested in your views on how we can better measure what matters.

Key documents

Other countries

Several countries have developed ways to measure progress and well-being.

While methods vary, they tend to assess similar economic, social and environmental outcomes.

Some countries are experimenting with more direct processes by linking progress indicators to priority and policy setting.

A national framework

The Australian Government and state and territory governments publish many indicators in reports, agreements and dashboards. These publications support decision making and accountability for particular policy areas.

Australia does not have a national framework or central set of indicators to complement the existing reporting and track overall progress.

OECD Framework

The OECD Framework for Measuring Well-being and Progress is well known and the inspiration for many countries’ approaches.

The OECD is a good starting point for thinking about Australia, but it has limitations in data and coverage.

For this reason, other countries have identified specific objectives, policy areas and indicators to supplement the OECD.

Adding further detail will be important for Australia to reflect our unique conditions.


The October 2022-23 Budget begins the conversation on how Australia might better measure what matters.

Next year, in 2023, the government will release a new stand‑alone Measuring What Matters Statement. While drawing on the work of the OECD, it will be unique to the Australian context.

Have your say

You can have your say on the application of the OECD framework to Australia.

When proposing indicators, please reference the data source, or note if no data is available how it can be collected. Suggested indicators should fit the criteria below.

What makes a good progress and well-being indicator?

Indicators should be:

  • Relevant: applicable to policy priorities
  • Complete: adequately cover all policy priorities
  • Measurable: have the potential for objective measurement, ideally with existing and continuing representative data available
  • Comparable: be defined and measured consistently to enable comparisons within a country and internationally
  • Reliable: underpinned by objective and accurate data which is not subject to different interpretations
  • Understandable: unambiguous, easy to understand by decision makers and key stakeholders, and be commonly used or standard where possible.

An effective framework will keep core indicator numbers low to support decision making by avoiding unnecessary complexity.

Source:    OECD (2011), ‘Compendium of OECD Well-being indicators’; Civitas (2020), ‘CIVITAS 2020 process and impact evaluation framework’.


165 submissions were received for this consultation, including 3 confidential submissions.

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