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The Gap Frame: a new global framework for a better world
Description/achievement of initiative

The Gap Frame is a national and global framework for business and other stakeholders to work towards a better world in a concrete and measurable way. The Gap Frame does two things: it identifies the burning issues of our times and it compares these issues against a normative, ideal state that is required so that we can all live well and within the limits of this planet.

Implementation methodologies

A first data version of the Gap Frame using a selection of 14 countries has been developed to generate a world data point and a first indication of the state of the world. These countries were selected to reflect the breadth and diversity of the world. The 14 countries were selected from the Social Progress Index and include countries from the most to the least advanced social progress nations. There are 69 indicators for some 24 issues identified under four categories: social, environmental, economic and governance. Once the beta version has been completed and is benchmarked and tested against expert input, the Gap Frame will extend to include increasingly more countries.

Arrangements for Capacity-Building and Technology Transfer

The Gap Frame is intended to provide an index that can be a lead indicator of how countries may be set up to perform in future. Countries and business organizations that operate among and beyond these countries can engage in applying their innovation power to solve these 24 burning issues.As such, the Gap Frame empowers nations and business to work together to attain a normative, desired future state.

Coordination mechanisms/governance structure

This research project with a highly applied dimension has been initiated by Business School Lausanne in partnership with the University of St. Gallen. A consultative body of experts are contributing to the development of the Gap Frame research.


Business School Lausanne and IWÖ (Institut für Wirtschaft und Oekologie) of St. Gallen University
Progress reports
Goal 17
17.19 - By 2030, build on existing initiatives to develop measurements of progress on sustainable development that complement gross domestic product, and support statistical capacity-building in developing countries
December 2017
A full global framework including all countries evaluated against current position vs a normative, ideal state, with a clear gap identified on each of the 24 issues using 69 indicators
Staff / Technical expertise
A research associate at 70 %
Staff / Technical expertise
Core Faculty member at 30 %
In-kind contribution
Location and administrative resources at BSL

Basic information
Time-frame: January 2015 - ongoing
Business School Lausanne and IWÖ (Institut für Wirtschaft und Oekologie) of St. Gallen University
Contact information
Katrin Muff, Dean, katrin.muff@bsl-lausanne.ch
United Nations