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Journal Article

Measuring National Well-being - exploring the well-being of children in the UK, 2014


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Publication date

Oct 2014


Children’s well-being is an important part of the nation’s well-being. In 2013, there were an estimated 12 million children aged 0 to 15, nearly a fifth of the UK population. Research from The Children’s Society has shown that a significant minority of UK children suffer from low well-being, which impacts on their childhood and life chances, and their families and communities (The Children’s Society, 2014).
Children’s well-being needs to be measured in a different way to adults. The framework for measuring national well-being puts indicators into 10 domains. Three domains (Governance, Natural Environment and Economy) are contextual and do not specifically relate to children’s well-being. The remaining 7 domains are consistent at all ages. To measure children’s well-being, the 7 domains have been adopted as a framework but have been populated with measures that reflect the aspects of children’s lives that are important to them, and have the greatest effect on their well-being.
ONS has developed a provisional set of 31 headline measures of children’s well-being across the 7 domains. These include both objective and subjective measures in the domains of:
Personal well-being
Our relationships
What we do
Where we live
Personal finance
Education and skills
In March 2014, ONS published a consultation on the first version of these measures. The consultation response was published in July 2014 and an updated set of measures will be published in 2015. This report presents estimates for 22 of the 31 measures of children’s well-being1. These estimates can be thought of as a baseline for children’s well-being. The report also considers how selected measures have changed over time or differ by gender, where this information is available.
1. Other measures are still in development and need further consideration in response to the consultation. They will be included in the updated set of measures in spring 2015.

Published in

Health Statistics Quarterly

Volume and page numbers

64 , 92 -117




Young People, Government, and Well Being



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