Adding Numbers to Complex Processes: Asian Integration Indicator Systems in Perspective
Even if Asia shows a relatively low density of regional integration arrangements, the continent has been relatively active in designing indicator systems to monitor the ongoing integration processes. Organisations such as the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, Asian Development Bank, Eurasian Development Bank, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific, and United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia have been involved in such activities. The purpose of this short article is to review the indicator systems that are currently being developed or have recently been developed, to monitor and analyse regional integration processes in Asia. These systems are cast against the background of experiences with building indicators and indicator systems globally.
A subset of indicator systems receives a closer look. The assessment covers: (i) general scope and purpose of the indicator system, (ii) specific scope (policy areas covered), (iii) indicator selection, and (iv) weighting and aggregation. Lessons are drawn from these experiences to inform future monitoring efforts in Asia and beyond.