Mark Henry: Let’s go ‘beyond GDP’ and use tax windfall to invest in quality of life

In 2021, Ireland created a non-GDP framework for measuring the nation’s well-being – it will tell us exactly how we need to use that windfall cash

Ireland is ranked eighth in the world in the UN’s human development index. Picture: Fergal Phillips

The most widely used metric for assessing national economic health, gross domestic product (GDP), is showing its age. It is now 90 years since economist Simon Kuznets developed it at the behest of the US Senate, an achievement which subsequently won him a Nobel prize.

As early as the 1960s, US senator Robert Kennedy called its value into question. Citing its failure to measure the health of children, the quality of education, the strength of ...