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from your report, it sounds like the discussions have been quite substantial (single vs. multiple indicators, internal vs. external objectives, policy implementation not only by government but other members of society, "holistic" planetary measures vs. country-by-country measures, etc.) ranging over topics that we have discussed here on ET.
from what you could see, could you gauge how "serious" the EU seems to be about developing such an index/set of indices and using it in place of the GDP? were there any indications that this was just lip-service/pandering to the currently fashionable concerns about sustainability, the environment, etc.?
Truth unfolds in time through a communal process.
I have a hunch that Catherine Day has something to do with that, to be insider-y.
The European Parliament seems similarly serious, as did the various statisticians from Eurostat and from the Member States, the OECD and to a certain extent even the World Bank.
The EU did not move on this conference as a mere showcase. If they did, they failed in a rather spectacular way, because as you say there was little media reporting on it. But the crowd they selected is not one you'd gather for a mere publicity stunt, I'd think.
Of course the EU is more than the people organising this conference, more than the Commission, more than the European Parliament. In order to really move in a big way on this matter, the Commission needs to convince the Member States to allocate more money to their statistical offices and perhaps also to Eurostat. If that will happen/work is an open question.
And then there are other challenges, like opening up information...
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