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Meaningful Metrics for a Smart Society
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Date: 2019-11-21 Page is: DBtxt001.php L0700-PP-metrics-for-PLACE

TRUE VALUE METRICS
The PROGRESS & PERFORMANCE of PLACE

Measure State and you Measure Progress

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PLACE - WHERE PEOPLE LIVE THEIR LIVES

PLACE is where everything happens. It is where people live and work and play, and, it is where economic activity consumes resources, degrades the environment and produces products that are needed and wanted by people.

The performance of place depends a lot on the people or human capital of the place ... their culture, their character, their skills and a host of other people characteristics.

The performance of place also depends on the natural capital of the place. Over the course of history places have been successful when human capital and natural capital complement each other
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METRICS for MANAGING the PLACE

The purpose of economic activity is for people to improve and maintain their quality of life and standard of living. Conventional metrics simply focus economic performance as measured by financial and macroeconomic indicators, with almost no attention to metrics that focus on people and their quality of life and the impact on the environment.

There are very powerful and efficient financial metrics for business ORGANIZATIONS which have become very efficient at optimizing for profit. In the process they ignore all the externalities that are outside the perview of the the reporting entity. For a very long time, there has been the assumption that what is good for business is good for people and society, but in recent years this assumption has become invalid in practice. While the correlation between business profit and GDP growth and quality of life may have been strong for much of the industrial revolution, since the 1970s, the correlation in all rich economies has disappeared.

There are very powerful metrics around the accounting and reporting of business performance as measured by money transactions and profit. What may be referred to as conventional financial accounting, tracks all money based transactions related to the organization and organizes the information into accounts that facilitate reporting of the balance sheet ('state') of the organization and the profit and loss account ('flow' or profit) of the organization.

This system of metrics is powerful because:
(1) There is clarity about the STATE of the organization ... the 'balance sheet accounts' and the Balance Sheet, and the ACTIVITIES or the organization ... the profit and loss accounts and the profit and loss report (P&L Account: and,
(2) it allows for easy summarization of the data for reporting and in addition allows for 'drill down' to detailed levels all the way down to the individual transaction.

These conventional financial accounting metrics do not, however, incorporate the impact the activities of the organization are having on the external world. All the focus in on the profit performance of the organization and all the impacts on people, planet (environment), society, etc. are ignored.

To some extent, legislation and regulations by governments in recent years are getting the attention of the business community on the external impacts that are doing damage to society and to the environment. However, too many in corporate leadership have not embraced the need to change corporate behavior and lead in getting balance between profit performance and performance related to society and the environment.

TVM is a system or framework that enhances conventional money accounting, to include all the transactions that have impact on everything ... on all the activities and actors, and all the capitals, not just the financial capital and the financial elements of the transactions.
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PLACE - AN EFFECTIVE LOCUS FOR ANALYTICAL METRICS

A PLACE does not move ... it stays in the same location for ever. This is a basis for reliable comparative performance over time.

TPB Note: I grew up in Okehampton, Devon, England around 70 years ago. Its population was a little over 4,000 people, up from about 3,500 in the 1930s. Almost a thousand years before the place had a population of a few hundred as recorded in the Domesday book prepared by William the Conqueror after the Norman Conquest of 1066.

The persistence of a place contrasts with the rapid change and fast moving nature of much of the modern world, including the news cycle. The media is meant to play a role in making social, economic and political actors accountable, but this cannot happen with a fast and overloaded news cycle. Something subtly different is needed, and accountability in a place may be part of the answer.

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The IMPACT of PLACE on PEOPLE GO TOP
POPULATION / PEOPLE

The demographic profile


PEOPLE are a most important asset and especially young people, and those with capacity to contribute

The STATE of the POPULATION
The STATE of the POPULATION is a major element in the STATE of the PLACE. This is both about QUALITY OF LIFE and STANDARD OF LIVING of the PEOPLE which depends on access to a variety of PRODUCTS (goods and services) which has many COST OF LIVING components as well as their ability to CONTRIBUTE
AVAILABILITY OF GOODS, SERVICES AND ECONOMIC AND RECREATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES
... FOOD
... WATER
... SHELTER
... CLOTHING / STUFF
... ACCESS TO HEALTH SERVICES
... ACCESS TO EDUCATION
... ACCESS TO TRANSPORT
... ACCESS TO COMMUNICATIONS
... ACCESS TO OTHER ECONOMIC SERVICES

like retail stores, gas stations, healthcare, childcare, eldercare, education, roads / transport, utilities, public safety, etc is an important factor in the STATE of the POPULATION
... ACCESS TO EMPLOYMENT
Income and jobs are important in quality of life and the ability to pay for essential needs and other things needed for quality of life.
... ACCESS TO CULTURE / RELIGION / RECREATION
... ACCESS TO SOCIAL SAFETY NET

POTENTIAL TO CONTRIBUTE
... PARENTING
and other family oriented care-giving is a valuable part of QUALITY OF LIFE
... ACCESS TO EMPLOYMENT - II
provides an organizational setting for people to CONTRIBUTE and to be paid for it
... PRO-BONO VOLUNTEERING
is another way to make CONTRIBUTION.
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The IMPACT of PEOPLE on PLACE GO TOP
POPULATION / PEOPLE
Just as a place has an impact on people, people have an impact on a place. This is important, but not managed very well.
PROGRESS AND PERFORMANCE PLACE PLACE is central to almost everything ... inter alia, it's where we live, where organizations operate and where pollution is visible TO DO ... Images to be changed to be more relevant for the subject
PLACE - where SECTORS come together
A TPB note from the 1980s:
It has become apparent that projects being funded by the World Bank, the United Nations and others are not having significant long term impact ... in fact many are simply failing to deliver on the goals that were used to justify their funding. When I researched this in the field, it became apparent that many of the projects were not failing because of an inherent problem with the project, but because there was an assumption that other things would be working, when in fact, these other things were not working very well or completely missing. The community development projects that worked where ones that had a multi-sector approach and were relevant to the issues in a particular place. Every place is different. This meant that considerable flexibility needed to be available in order for the project to implement successfully. Most projects lacked much flexibility, and most of the funding institutions made it difficult if not impossible to change the project design after negotiation and during implementation. Many projects lacked mechanisms to inform decisions makers about performance until it was too late. I did many project evaluations long after the project had been completed ... and no matter what the outcome of my analysis, it was essentially a waste of time. One could argue that the evaluations would be used to improve project design in the future, but any such feedback was minuscule.
For many years the UN system adjusted the budget for the project to equal the actual expenditures for the project so that ALL projects came in 'on budget'. This was common practice for years and suggests that the UN system had little or no understanding of how management oversight and budget control should work! This was one of many examples of how the UN adminsitrative system was dysfunctional
TO DO ... BUILD A FILE to navigate to the individual places: L0200-PLACES



The text being discussed is available at

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TrueValueMetrics (TVM) is an Open Source / Open Knowledge initiative. It has been funded by family and friends plus donations from well wishers who understand the importance of accountability and getting the management metrics right. TVM is a 'big idea' that has the potential to be a game changer leveling the playing field so the wealth and power is shared on a more reasonable basis between people who work for a living and those that own the economy and the levers of power. In order to be effective, it cannot be funded in the conventional way with a for profit business plan, but absolutely must remain an open access initiative.
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