Amy Carter

The Influencers Column: Amy Carter

Amy Carter: The Christchurch Foundation Chief Executive
Amy Carter: The Christchurch Foundation Chief Executive

New Zealand was recently named as the most prosperous country in the world by The Legatum Institute. The London based think tank has recently released its annual global Prosperity Index for 2018, a huge survey that ranks the most prosperous nations.
New Zealand now outranks Finland – a country we are often highlighted as performing poorly against. Since the index was first founded in 2007, our lowest place was fourth and we have taken out the top spot seven times.
Given recent newspaper headlines outlining our childhood poverty statistics, the housing crisis and rivers we can’t swim in, this came as a surprise to me. So, I did a little more research and thinking on this topic.
The Legatum Institute doesn’t view prosperity as being just the amount of money that a country has. It compared 104 variables in developing the rankings, including personal freedom, natural environment and social capital.
Further reading of their website provides more detail. It’s well worth a look – just visit
When reviewing these results, it seems to me that all of us have a role to play to ensure that our collective prosperity is spread more evenly. We are doing ok, but we can do better.
Smart central government policy and investment are obviously key, but these wheels take time to turn. In contrast, a nimble, grassroots-engaged, fact-based charity or social enterprise can make an impact quickly, if it is well supported.

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