Yuki Yoshida (GESA 2013) and her advisers make a case for the reevaluation of societal assets to place greater emphasis on the maintenance of rural areas in their paper. In light of rural decline according to conventional indicators such as GDP, the article contributes to the ongoing search for indicators of sustainable development. The Inclusive Wealth Index had been developed specifically to guide sustainable development and is highly regarded as a promising policy tool. However, the team applies this index at the local level and discusses practical difficulties of its implementation in a manner that reflects realities that matter for wellbeing.
The team further highlights the wealth of Sado Island, a rural island in Japan, by comparing its inclusive wealth with that of Japan between 1990 and 2014. They report that Sado’s per capita wealth is about 10% lower than national averages, but that its natural capital is about threefold national averages. The article also supplements preexisting calculations and reveals the relative undervaluation of Sado’s assets, thereby pointing to a reevaluation of societal assets to place greater emphasis on the maintenance of such areas. Learn more here.