The Social Progress Index

Collaborating to measure what really matters

Measuring what matters to countries, regions and communities, for government, business and society

Facing complex challenges

The world is facing increasingly complex social challenges. Leaders ignore these challenges at their cost. Indeed much of the anger making itself felt across the world is the result of slow-changing or stagnating standards of living. Rising GDP figures mask real problems societies face and the struggles of ordinary people.

Designed to complement GDP through providing a more holistic view, the 2018 Index measures what really matters to people – basic human needs, wellbeing and opportunity. This year’s index includes data from 146 countries on 51 indicators, covering 98% of the world population.

2018 Social Progress Index – Luxembourg

Key findings include

  • Norway is the world’s top performer on the Social Progress Index in 2018, closely followed by three additional Nordic countries and Switzerland rounding out the top five.
  • For the first time, SPI is able to compare 146 countries’ social progress performance across five years to help map global, regional, and national trends. On average, over the last five years the world is improving.


Since 2014, the world average score has improved by 1.66 points from 61.80/100 to 63.46/100.


133 countries (91% of those measured) improved by half a point or more; 111 improved by one point or more, and 19 countries improved by three or more points.

  • Luxembourg shows an excellent overall performance, being ranked 8th on the Social Performance Index.

Essential takeaways

Leason to learn from the SPI results analysis is that Luxembourg is outperformed by countries that have inferior GDPs per capita such as Japan which is ranked 7th with a GDP per capita that is 2.5 times lower than Luxembourg’s. These results show that the social performance of a country is to some extent independent from its relative economic performance. Consequently, it raises the question whether governments should prioritize economic growth rather than social progress; in the context of approaching elections in Luxembourg, this question could be considered in the decisions that will define the budget proposed by the future government.

The Social Progress Index enables governments, businesses, and civil society organizations to systematically identify and prioritize the most pressing needs of their communities through both the Global Index as well as through regional, local and community level social progress indices. Acting as a road map, the Index has the ability to help enable leaders – across business, government and civil society – to identify a strategy towards responsible and inclusive growth.

Deloitte believes that business has both the power and the imperative to help address societal challenges. Social progress is the foundation of competitiveness, stability and sustainability. Economies cannot thrive without healthy and well-educated citizens, adequate infrastructure, effective legal systems and inclusiveness.

The Social Progress Index enables governments, businesses, and civil society organizations to systematically identify and prioritize the most pressing needs of their communities. Acting as a road map, the Index and its various indicators enable businesses to identify opportunities to develop their markets sustainably by responding to social needs.










Different GDP, similar outcome

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