Measuring the concept of “wellbeing”: A first approach for Bolivia

Jose Antonio Canaviri


This is a first approach to measuring wellbeing inBoliviaat subnational levels. The analysis includes the construction of a multidimensional index that calculates “distances” (Distance P2). The index considers the worst values of a set of indicators taken as a reference among municipalities (unit of analysis) and aggregates across time (from 2000 to 2011) and dimensions (material, social and human). The comparisons are of changes over time between municipalities, based on their wellbeing values. It aims to answer the following questions:

  • What is the level of wellbeing of the Bolivian population from an objective-subnational perspective?
  • Which municipalities have the highest and lowest levels of wellbeing?
  • How has the wellbeing of the Bolivian population evolved over time at subnational levels?
  • Which indicators contribute most to the measurement of wellbeing at subnational levels?

In general, the municipalities with the lowest values of wellbeing are concentrated in the Department of Oruro. In addition, if temporal analysis is included, these municipalities remain in the lowest positions. Overall, Bolivians’ wellbeing decreased at subnational levels over time from 2000 to 2011.


Dp2 distance, subnational levels, wellbeing

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