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HUMAN DEVELOPMENT INDEX

The HDI is and index used by united nations development programme to measure the
level of develpment in a country.
The HDI takes into consideration 3 main aspects (3+4+1)
ECONOMIC WELL BEING: - Income per capita
- Employment struct
ure
- Employment opport
unities
HEALTH: - Life expectancy
- Infant mortality rate
- Access to water supply
- Access to sanitation faciliti
es
EDUCATION - Literacy rate
LIMITATIONS OF HDI:
- The HDI is most accurate when used in DCs, bec: in DCs it is easier to obtain
data needed to calculate HDI.
(Accuracy may not be there)
- In places where the data is unavailable, the final value of HDI may be less re
liable. (Time lag betweem year of publishes and yearof the data)
- HDI fails to take into account measurement of human rights and freedom.
Income per capita: is the average income each worker in a country receives in a
year.
We measure it by taking into consideration the Gross Dromestic product GDP of th
e country. GDP refers to the total income generated by a country in one year.
In order to compare the wealth of different countries, we cannot use GDP bec: ea
ch country has a different population size. Therefore, we use GDP per capita whi
ch refers to the economic wealth of a country measured in terms of the total val
ue of goods and services produced by each person in a country. This vaue is used
as a measure of the average income earned by each person of a country.
Countries with the highest GDP per capita can be classified as countries with hi
gh human develpment. These countried tend to be DCs and have a higher HDI rankin
g than LDCs.
Employment structure: shows the proportion of workforce in the 3 main employment
sectors - primary industry, - secondary industry, - tertiary industry.
Generally primary industry contribute relatively little to a country's wealth be
c: activities such as extraction of raw materials do not generate much income.
Secondary and tertiary tend to generate more income. E.g. processing raw materia
ls and selling them is more profitable than selling unprocessed raw materials.
DCs have a large proportion of their workforce involved in tertiary industries.
Employment opportunities: refers to the availability of jobs in a country.
When there are more employment opportunities, more people will be able to obtain
employment, and income per capita of a country usually increases. Thus, standar
d of living will also increase.
DCs tend to have more employment opportunities than LDCs. With better standard o
f living, people seek for a more comfortable and convenient life. This encourage
s the sec industry to expand. (more goods like mobile phones, computers,..)
Life expectancy: refers to the average number of years a person is expected to l
ive.
Usually the more developed a country is the higher the life's expectancy, this i
s because as a country develops, the more likely it is that people have enough f
ood to eat. They are also more likely to live in a clean environment and have be
tter excess to health care.
In LDCs many people cant afford medical services, thus, their life expectancy is
short. It is also due to the lack of food and water, as well as access to medic
ine and doctors.
Infant Mortality Rate: refers to the rate at which the number of babies less tha
n 1 year of age dies, for every 1000 live births in a year.
Usually the more developed a country is the lower the infant mortality rate. Bec
: DCs have proper healthcare amenties, such as clinics, hospitals and medical re
search facilties.
Access to water supply: which refers to the provision of clean water for people
in a country. Having access to clean water supply is important for the developm
ent of a country.
People living in DCs have better access to clean water than people in LDCs. In D
Cs clean drinking water is easily available to people bec: water is supplied by
home pipes.
However, people in LDCs usually have to walk far distance to access to water. Th
e lack of water in LDCs reflects the poor standrad of living and poor quality of
life.
Access to sanitation facilities: which allows people to dispose of human waste h
ygienically.
Countries with proper sanitation facilities have toilets with proper flushing sy
stems. If human waste is not properly disposed, but left on open ground, people
will be exposed to bacteria present in the waste such as contamination. Such imp
roper disposal practices can lead to a widespread of diseses such as dysentry.
In rural parts of many LDCs, waste is either left in open or buried in the field
s. The waste may seep into the ground and contaminate the groundwater. This pose
s a health risk to people relying on these sources of water.
Literacy rate: refers to the percentage of adults in a country, who can read and
write. It is important people to be able to read and write in order for them to
be efficient in using technology such as computers and contribute to the tertia
ry industry.
This will ensure that the country can continue to develop and achieve a better s
tandard of living.
DCs generally have a higher literacy rate than LDCs. In LDCs only a small propor
tion is usually educated, thus, only a small proportion can be involved in terti
ary industries, which will not generate much income to their economy.