Children matter desperately – both as people and as tomorrow’s adults. Altogether, 31 percent of the world’s population is aged under 18,1 representing one third of all human experience. This is the group we focus on in this report, and for convenience we shall refer to them as ‘children’.
What matters most about them is their subjective wellbeing – how they feel about their lives. This reflects a new shift of emphasis among policymakers worldwide. Increasingly people feel that the success of a society cannot be judged mainly by its level of wealth but rather by how satisfied people are with their lives.2 Nearly all Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries now measure adult life satisfaction as a routine statistic,3 and many are considering new forms of policy analysis with this as the objective.