IELTS General Writing Task 2 — Model Answer Band 8

Economic growth has helped to improve standards of living all over the world. However, some research shows that people in developing countries are happier with this trend than people in developed countries. Explain why you think this is.

A Discussion and Opinion Essay
with a Funnel Approach Introduction

Many people make the assumption that the production of more and more goods is always a good thing for all economies. They say that this growth generates wealth, not just for the wealthy few but for all strata of society. They argue that increasing productions brings immediate benefit to rich industrialists but that, in turn, they provide employment for, and buy goods and services from, other less wealthy individuals will pay more in taxes and thus the money from growth will benefit everyone, through improved health and education, and that a happier, more stable and more developed society will result.

However, other people argue that such growth in production can have the opposite effect. They contend that any riches tend to be claimed by the few and trickle down to very few others in the community. Also, wealthy people know how to use a variety of devious measures to evade paying tax. Another argument against such growth is that even if this wealth does filter down to all citizens it does not, in itself, bring about a better society. Instead it can produce a consumerist mentality which draws a simple equation between having ‘things’ and being happy. This is bad for the moral and spiritual life of the country and also can damage the environment as people want more and more objects, creating pollution through production and disposal of waste.

On balance, I feel that a compromise position is the healthiest one — some economic growth should be encouraged as long as there safeguards intended to ensure fair distribution of wealth and reduce the negative impact of the environment.