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Infosheet: Quality of Life Framework for Canada

PDF version: Quality of Life Framework for Canada infosheet (608 KB)

Quality of Life Framework for Canada infosheet
Description - Quality of Life Framework for Canada infosheet

The title of this infosheet is "Quality of Life Framework for Canada".

This infosheet shows the domains, subdomains, indicators and cross-cutting lenses of the Quality of Life Framework for Canada.

It is divided into five sections, one for each domain of the Framework:

  • Prosperity
  • Health
  • Society
  • Environment
  • Good governance

In each domain's section, indicators are listed, categorized by subdomain. The number of subdomains and indicators varies between domains.

Indicators that are headline indicators are identified with a star. Headline indicators are intended to provide a high-level assessment of overall quality of life in Canada.


The Prosperity domain is represented by an image of a line graph.

The subdomain "Income and growth" includes the following indicators:

  • Household income (headline indicator)
  • Gross domestic product (GDP) per capita
  • Productivity
  • Access to high-speed Internet
  • Household wealth
  • Investment in in-house research and development
  • Public net financial liabilities-to-GDP ratio
  • Firm growth

The subdomain "Employment and job quality" includes the following indicators:

  • Employment (headline indicator)
  • Labour underutilization
  • Wages
  • Precarious or gig work
  • Job satisfaction

The subdomain "Skills and opportunity" includes the following indicators:

  • Youth not in employment, education or training (NEET) (headline indicator)
  • Access to early learning and child care
  • Child, student and adult skills
  • Postsecondary attainment
  • Future outlook

The subdomain "Economic security and deprivation" includes the following indicators:

  • Housing needs (headline indicator)
  • Poverty (headline indicator)
  • Protection from income shocks
  • Financial well-being
  • Homelessness
  • Food security


The Health domain is represented by a heart and heartbeat (electrocardiogram).

The subdomain "Healthy people" includes the following indicators:

  • Health-adjusted life expectancy (headline indicator)
  • Self-rated mental health (headline indicator)
  • Self-rated health
  • Physical activity
  • Functional health status
  • Children vulnerable in early development
  • Fruit and vegetable consumption/healthy eating environments

The subdomain "Healthy care systems" includes the following indicators:

  • Timely access to primary care provider
  • Unmet health care needs
  • Unmet needs for mental health care
  • Long-term care (access and quality)
  • Access to supplementary health insurance
  • Unmet needs for home care
  • Cost-related non-adherence to prescription medication


The Society domain is represented by a group of people.

The subdomain "Culture and identity" includes the following indicators:

  • Sense of pride/belonging to Canada
  • Positive perceptions of diversity
  • Indigenous languages
  • Knowledge of official languages
  • Participation in culture or religious practices, recreation or sport

The subdomain "Social cohesion and connections" includes the following indicators:

  • Sense of belonging to local community (headline indicator)
  • Someone to count on (headline indicator)
  • Trust in others
  • Volunteering
  • Satisfaction with personal relationships (family and friends)
  • Loneliness
  • Accessible environments

The subdomain "Time use" includes the following indicators:

  • Time use (headline indicator)
  • Satisfaction with time use


The Environment domain is represented by trees.

The subdomain "Environment and people" includes the following indicators:

  • Air quality (headline indicator)
  • Drinking water (headline indicator)
  • Climate change adaptation (headline indicator)
  • Natural disasters and emergencies
  • Satisfaction with local environment
  • Walkable communities
  • Access to public transit

The subdomain "Ecological integrity and environmental stewardship" includes the following indicators:

  • Greenhouse gas emissions (headline indicator)
  • Conserved areas (headline indicator)
  • Canadian species index
  • Water quality in Canadian rivers
  • Natural capital
  • Waste management
  • Marine and coastal ecosystems

Good governance

The Good governance domain is represented by a courthouse.

The subdomain "Safety and security" includes the following indicators:

  • Personal safety (headline indicator)
  • Crime Severity Index
  • Perceptions of neighbourhood safety after dark
  • Childhood maltreatment
  • Household emergency preparedness

The subdomain "Democracy and institutions" includes the following indicators:

  • Confidence in institutions (headline indicator)
  • Voter turnout
  • Representation in senior leadership positions
  • Canada's place in the world
  • Misinformation/trust in media
  • Indigenous self-determination

The subdomain "Justice and human rights" includes the following indicators:

  • Discrimination and unfair treatment (headline indicator)
  • Cyberbullying
  • Access to fair and equal justice (civil and criminal)
  • Resolution of serious legal problems
  • Incarceration rate

"Life satisfaction" and "Sense of meaning and purpose" are headline indicators, separate from the other five domains.

Cross-cutting lenses

The Fairness and Inclusion lens is intended to inform policy and program development, leading to greater equity and equality, by assessing the distribution of outcomes for different populations in Canada.

The Sustainability and Resilience lens promotes long-term thinking by considering the trajectory of indicators in order to identify risks, build resilience and ensure that policy choices are contributing to a higher quality of life not only now but in the years ahead.

Quality of Life Framework for Canada image

The infosheet also shows an image which illustrates the Quality of Life Framework for Canada. The Framework is represented as a circular graphic with the term "Quality of Life" in a circle at its centre. The circular graphic is divided into five segments which represent each of the five domains of the framework: Prosperity, Health, Society, Environment and Good governance. Each domain is represented by an icon: Prosperity domain by an image of a line graph, Health by a heart and heartbeat (electrocardiogram) line, Society by a group of people, Environment by trees and Good Governance by a courthouse. The two lenses of the framework, Fairness and Inclusion and Sustainability and Resilience, encircle the image, represented by curved arrows.

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