Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Measuring value

It's been quite a time away from these walls since I last professed an aim to weave together that will produce the economic models.

This is not surprising, I get easily distracted and have found a variety of projects with which to busy myself.

The ideas, however, are flowing again: much inspired by chance events and the reading of the Economics of Happiness by Mark Anielski

It seems vitally important, after years railing against the conspet of measurement, that we go ahead and do it, but do it right.

The case against measurement is easy- it describes in certain limitations what is really going on. A lot needs to happen before it is illuminating, both in the mind of the observer and the person producing the study.

One of the problems of our age - if I can be so grandiloquent as to name one* - is that measurements dictate our moves and it pains us to admit we have become slaves of the machine:

to produce to specifications, not dreamed by a scientist, philosopher or our own good sense.

But by other numbers. And it is pulling our planet, our society and great civilisations apart.

The rumble you have heard or experienced this last economic year is barely a whisper.

But enough of that. We are people of progress, advancement and resolution on the face of the quake, and the fluffy economist is nothing but an optimist.

So - the measurement chink of light that I saw is that we make our measurements better - so they circumscribe more juicy stats to give us an idea not just of material, nor reduce genuine feelingness or knowingness to a material base.

What is required are measurements that reflect 'real value' of us as beings in the world and our rightful place in it.

It requires a certain trust of our fellow and their impressions and it needs more than soundbite surveys, but questions that listen.

Dear Reader, my thoughts have not got further than this. The next question is:

What qualities does a measurement need in order to reflect real value?

I have an idea the answer will blow apart the question.

Comments please!


* as well as so grandiloquent as to say 'grandiloqient'**
** and then use grandiloquent twice in the same sentence***
***I'll stop there

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