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Social IndicatorsThe EU and Social Inclusion$
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Tony Atkinson, Bea Cantillon, Eric Marlier, and Brian Nolan

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780199253494

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0199253498.001.0001

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Indicators in Principle

Indicators in Principle

(p.19) 2 Indicators in Principle
Social Indicators

Tony Atkinson (Contributor Webpage)

Bea Cantillon (Contributor Webpage)

Eric Marlier

Brian Nolan

Oxford University Press

Begins with an examination of the principles underlying the construction of social indicators to be used for the express purpose of assessing performance in achieving the social agenda of the EU. The end product in this context is a portfolio of common indicators applied across the EU, and the principles involved in its construction may concern either the single indicators or the portfolio as a whole. Indicators can take different forms, and the second part of Ch. 2 considers indicator properties; since any portfolio of indicators involves selecting from a range of competing alternatives, it is essential to understand the full set of possibilities. Choice of indicators involves compromise over objectives, but will also be constrained by data limitations and by institutional differences across countries; these are the subjects of the third part of Ch. 2.

Keywords:   choice of indicators, construction of social indicators, data for social indicator construction, data limitations, EU, indicator properties, institutional differences, performance assessment, social agenda, social indicators

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