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Date: 2022-07-02 Page is: DBtxt001.php txt00004437

Metrics
Calvert-Henderson Quality of Life Indicators

Re-Creation Indicator

Burgess COMMENTARY

Peter Burgess

Re-Creation Indicator

This indicator goes beyond the material aspects of our existence and our focus on healthy bodies and well-educated minds to our spirits and how we re-create ourselves. Of course body, mind and spirit are all integrated within our lives. We all have diverse ways of expressing these aspects of our being and personal development.

Our indicator embraces all these aspects in mapping our extraordinarily diverse forms of recreation from volunteering in community projects, helping preserve wildlife, and serving the poor to attending concerts, museums, or just enjoying bowling, hunting, and fishing. The model traces how we organize and spend our private and public resources on such recreational activities. The indicator embraces self-improving experience (from religious, spiritual pursuits to other forms of self-development); patronizing the arts; physical sports and fitness; do-it-yourself crafts; gardening; home-improvement; hobbies; vicarious experience (TV, video games, and the Internet); socializing and home entertaining; travel and tourism (now the world's biggest industry); games of chance and betting; and chemical escape (alcohol, tobacco and drugs).

This indicator is a fascinating panorama of these evolving activities of Americans, which together form the largest and fastest-growing sector of our services-dominated economy. Statistical and methodological debates abound on the size and shape of this emerging 'Attention Economy' (Henderson 1996). How do we resolve the tradeoffs between work, money income and leisure time? As in all our indicators, we become vividly aware of the crucial nature of statistics and the assumptions and paradigms driving their collection.

This indicator even though data are only updated annually or even less frequently, is a fascinating panorama of these evolving activities of Americans. Together they form the largest and fastest-growing sector of our services-dominated economy. Many attest to how the terrorist attacks on the US caused them to reflect deeply on their lives, their meaning and purpose. Communities are opting to honor their local past and culture by building museums and art galleries, as LORD Cultural Resources of Toronto, Canada continues to document. Over 109 million Americans volunteer at least 3.5 hours a week in their communities, and the nonprofit, voluntary sector contributes between 7-10% of the GNP (Independent Sector 1999). A 1999 poll cited in Business Week, found that 78% of Americans say that they feel the need in their lives to experience spiritual growth, up from 20% in 1994. Our Re-Creation Indicator will keep us aware of such changes.



The text being discussed is available at
http://www.calvert-henderson.com/overview-recreation.htm
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