Sustainable Nations: What do Aggregate Indicators Tell Us?

Tinbergen Institute Discussion Paper No. 2008-012/3

22 Pages Posted: 28 Jan 2008

See all articles by Ram Pillarisetti

Ram Pillarisetti

University of Brunei Darussalam

Jeroen C. J. M. van den Bergh

VU University Amsterdam - Department of Spatial Economics

Date Written: December 2007

Abstract

What is a 'sustainable nation' and how can we identify and rank 'sustainable nations'? Are nations producing and consuming in a sustainable way? Aggregate indicators have been proposed to answer these questions. This paper quantitatively compares three aggregate indicators of sustainability: the World Bank's 'Genuine Savings' measure, the 'Ecological Footprint' and the 'Environmental Sustainability Index'. It is concluded that rankings of sustainable nations vary significantly among these indicators. Implications of this disagreement for analysis and policy are suggested.

Keywords: Adjusted Net Savings, Ecological Debt, Ecological Footprint, Environmental Sustainability Index, Genuine Savings, Sustainability

JEL Classification: O1, Q2, Q28, F0

Suggested Citation

Pillarisetti, J. Ram and van den Bergh, Jeroen C.J.M., Sustainable Nations: What do Aggregate Indicators Tell Us? (December 2007). Tinbergen Institute Discussion Paper No. 2008-012/3. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1087903 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1087903

J. Ram Pillarisetti (Contact Author)

University of Brunei Darussalam ( email )

Jalan Tungku Link
Gadong
Bandar Seri Begawan, BE1410
Brunei

Jeroen C.J.M. Van den Bergh

VU University Amsterdam - Department of Spatial Economics ( email )

De Boelelaan 1105
Faculty of Economics and Econometrics
1081HV Amsterdam
Netherlands

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