Health Nature and Quality of Life

Health Nature and Quality of Life

Dated Published: February 2016

With the beginning of the century, BRICS economies emerged as five bright stars comprising major share in world GDP and world trade with almost 43 per cent share in global population. Impressive growth rates in the last decade in these economies set new heights for economic growth, however, in the process the inclusive development in these economies has also emerged as a major challenge. As a result, several social programmes were launched for ensuring equity and equal opportunity across different strata of society. Growing exclusion and depletion of resource base have raised several issues related to well-being of a large number of people across these and other fellow developing countries.

In light of this, the present Volume ‘Health, Nature and Quality of Life: Towards BRICS Wellness Index’ attempts to re-define the rationale that growth parameters have assumed in our development matrix. In this volume, RIS has tried to revisit the debate associated with income as a parameter of economic growth and has tried to reconcile it in light of contemporary commitments, particularly related to sustainable development goals. It is also pertinent to underline here that the contents of the present volume also carry forward the intensive research work that RIS initiated as far back as in 1992, while conducting the study on “Basic Needs Issues in Development: An Appraisal” by the research team led by Prof. V.R. Panchamukhi, the first Director General of RIS and comprising of Mr. G.A. Tadas and Prof. S.K. Mohanty. The Basic Needs Study had proposed an Aggregate Development Index (ADI) to cover aspects of productivity, structural changes, urbanisation, dependency rate of population, trade openness, energy consumption, etc.

The time, for BRICS economies to take cognizance of wellness of their people in
their domestic development strategies and capture that through adequate measurement of it, has come. We sincerely hope that the BRICS governments would take into account the rising aspirations of their people, societies and various stakeholders to redefine the way we look at the process of economic growth and how best the economic strategies may also ensure protection of environment and ecological balance. The volume is also attempting to bring out relevance of traditional insights from the rich knowledge base of BRICS economies and their perspectives on this idea of ‘one with nature’ in the larger context of ‘one world’. With reference to the issue of well-being, each BRICS nation has novel ideas which are presented in this volume, contributed by eminent scholars from these countries.

We hope the policymakers and researchers from BRICS and other countries would find it relevant to consider the idea of BRICS Wellness Index. We are grateful to Ambassador Shyam Saran, Chairman, RIS for his guidance in this task. We should also place on record our gratitude to the Government of India’s Ministry of External Affairs, Ministry of AYUSH, and Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation for their consistent support and participation in this effort; in particular to Mr. Amar Sinha, Secretary, Ministry of External Affairs; Prof. T.C.A. Anant, Secretary, Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation and Mr. Ajit M. Sharan, Secretary, Ministry of AYUSH for their continued support and encouragement.


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