Date & time
Indonesia has achieved moderately fast economic growth for most of the past 50 years. Has this growth translated into rising living standards? The conclusion, broadly, is a qualified yes. The caveat is attached for two reasons: philosophically, the definition of ‘living standards’ remains a subject of considerable conjecture; and not all the indicators assembled in the narrative that follows point in the same direction. The study focuses primarily on trends in measurable indicators of human welfare, including consumption levels (and hence poverty estimates), various social indicators such as education and health, and their distribution across individuals (or households), gender and regions. It also refers briefly to the various subjective indicators of welfare. In addition, the study investigates whether (and how) the sudden swing in 1998-2001 from an authoritarian and centralised regime to a democratic and decentralised era impacted significantly on these trends.