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Calling for a fundamental change in the focus of public policy in America, this book paints a vivid portrait of the nation's social health. Miringoff and Opdycke clearly show that social progress has stalled and the country's energies need to be directed at critical domestic issues in the years ahead.The authors propose a new agenda for monitoring America's social well-being built around sixteen key indicators of American life, such as infant mortality, teenage suicide, health insurance coverage, and affordable housing. They maintain that social conditions, like economic conditions, must be constantly monitored in order to have a clear sense of "how we are doing" as a society.The book builds on the work of the Institute for Innovation in Social Policy and argues that there needs to be a greater visibility for social issues - and a closer link between social reporting and public action - to better address the nation's social problems. It considers the critical role of the media in advancing public understanding of social issues, and examines important advances in the community indicators movement and international social reporting. Eye-opening and compelling, the book is a provocative centerpiece for policy debates and national initiatives on today's crucial domestic concerns.
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