Human Development Index

The Human Development Index (commonly abbreviated HDI) is a summary of human development around the world and implies whether a country is developed, still developing, or underdeveloped. Human Development Index also shows how appealing and attractive a country is as a place to live. It is measured based on factors such as life expectancy, education, literacy, gross domestic product per capita. The results of the HDI are published in the Human Development Report, which is commissioned by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and is written by scholars, those who study world development and members of the Human Development Report Office of the UNDP.

Today, the HDI examines three basic dimensions to measure a country’s growth and achievements in human development.

– The first of these is health for the country’s people. This is measured by life expectancy at birth and those with higher life expectancies rank higher than those with lower life expectancies.

– The second dimension measured in the HDI is a country’s overall knowledge level as measured by the adult literacy rate combined with the gross enrollment ratios of students in primary school through the university level.

– The third and final dimension in the HDI is a country’s standard of living. Those with higher standards of living rank higher than those with lower standards of living. This dimension is measured with the gross national income (GNI) per capita adjusted to purchasing power parity standard (PPP).

The UNDP classifies each country into one of three development bins:

– Low human development for HDI scores between 0.0 and 0.5,
– Medium human development for HDI scores between 0.5 and 0.8
– High human development for HDI scores between 0.8 and 1.0.

Limitations of the Human Development Index

– The HDI notably fails to take account of qualitative factors, such as cultural identity and political freedoms (human security, gender opportunities and human rights for example).

– Many argue that the HDI should become more human-centred and expanded to include more dimensions, ranging from gender equity to environmental biodiversity

– The GNP/GNI per capita figure – and consequently the HDI figure – takes no account of income distribution. If income is unevenly distributed, then GNP/GNI per capita will be an inaccurate measure of the monetary well-being of the people. Inequitable development is not human development.

– PPP values change very quickly and are likely to be inaccurate or misleading.

The 2010 edition of the Human Development Report marked the launch of a new Inequality-adjusted HDI and also a Gender Inequality Index and a Multidimensional Poverty Index.

Human Development Index (HDI) – 2012 Rankings

Very High
Human Development
High Human Development Medium Human Development Low Human Development
  1. Norway
  2. Australia
  3. United States
  4. Netherlands
  5. Germany
  6. New Zealand
  7. Ireland
  8. Sweden
  9. Switzerland
  10. Japan
  11. Canada
  12. Korea (Republic of)
  13. Hong Kong, China (SAR)
  14. Iceland
  15. Denmark
  16. Israel
  17. Belgium
  18. Austria
  19. Singapore
  20. France
  21. Finland
  22. Slovenia
  23. Spain
  24. Liechtenstein
  25. Italy
  26. Luxembourg
  27. UnitedKingdom
  28. Czech Republic
  29. Greece
  30. Brunei Darussalam
  31. Cyprus
  32. Malta
  33. Andorra
  34. Estonia
  35. Slovakia
  36. Qatar
  37. Hungary
  38. Barbados
  39. Poland
  40. Chile
  41. Lithuania
  42. United Arab Emirates
  43. Portugal
  44. Latvia
  45. Argentina
  46. Seychelles
  47. Croatia
  48.  
     
     
     
     
     
     

  1. Bahrain
  2. Bahamas
  3. Belarus
  4. Uruguay
  5. Montenegro
  6. Palau
  7. Kuwait
  8. Russian Federation
  9. Romania
  10. Bulgaria
  11. Saudi Arabia
  12. Cuba
  13. Panama
  14. Mexico
  15. Costa Rica
  16. Grenada
  17. Libya
  18. Malaysia
  19. Serbia
  20. Antigua and Barbuda
  21. Trinidad and Tobago
  22. Kazakhstan
  23. Albania
  24. Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of)
  25. Dominica
  26. Georgia
  27. Lebanon
  28. Saint Kitts and Nevis
  29. Iran (Islamic Republic of)
  30. Peru
  31. The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia
  32. Ukraine
  33. Mauritius
  34. Bosnia and Herzegovina
  35. Azerbaijan
  36. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
  37. Oman
  38. Brazil
  39. Jamaica
  40. Armenia
  41. Saint Lucia
  42. Ecuador
  43. Turkey
  44. Colombia
  45. Sri Lanka
  46. Algeria
  47. Tunisia
  1. Tonga
  2. Belize
  3. Dominican Republic
  4. Fiji
  5. Samoa
  6. Jordan
  7. China
  8. Turkmenistan
  9. Thailand
  10. Maldives
  11. Suriname
  12. Gabon
  13. El Salvador
  14. Bolivia (Plurinational State of)
  15. Mongolia
  16. Palestine (State of)
  17. Paraguay
  18. Egypt
  19. Moldova (Republic of)
  20. Philippines
  21. Uzbekistan
  22. Syrian Arab Republic
  23. Micronesia (Federated States of)
  24. Guyana
  25. Botswana
  26. Honduras
  27. Indonesia
  28. Kiribati
  29. South Africa
  30. Vanuatu
  31. Kyrgyzstan
  32. Tajikistan
  33. Viet Nam
  34. Namibia
  35. Nicaragua
  36. Morocco
  37. Iraq
  38. Cape Verde
  39. Guatemala
  40. Timor-Leste
  41. Ghana
  42. Equatorial Guinea
  43. India
  44. Cambodia
  45. Lao People’s Democratic Republic
  46. Bhutan
  47. Swaziland
  48.  
     

  1. Congo
  2. Solomon Islands
  3. São Tomé and Príncipe
  4. Kenya
  5. Bangladesh
  6. Pakistan
  7. Angola
  8. Myanmar
  9. Cameroon
  10. Madagascar
  11. Tanzania (United Republic of)
  12. Nigeria
  13. Senegal
  14. Mauritania
  15. Papua New Guinea
  16. Nepal
  17. Lesotho
  18. Togo
  19. Yemen
  20. Haiti
  21. Uganda
  22. Zambia
  23. Djibouti
  24. Gambia
  25. Benin
  26. Rwanda
  27. Côte d’Ivoire
  28. Comoros
  29. Malawi
  30. Sudan
  31. Zimbabwe
  32. Ethiopia
  33. Liberia
  34. Afghanistan
  35. Guinea-Bissau
  36. Sierra Leone
  37. Burundi
  38. Guinea
  39. Central African Republic
  40. Eritrea
  41. Mali
  42. Burkina Faso
  43. Chad
  44. Mozambique
  45. Congo (Democratic Republic of the)
  46. Niger
  47.  
     
     
     

The HDI rankings featured above were published in the 2013 Human Development Report: The Rise of the South: Human Progress in a Diverse World.

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