A scale from zero to 1 ranking countries in terms of the quality of life of its people, particularly the poorest. The index is computed from
Originally developed by Mahbub ul-Haq, the index has been used since 1993 by the United Nations Human Development Program, which issues an annual report. Because of continual improvements in the statistical measures used to determine the score, comparisons of scores or ranks from reports in different years is problematical, if suggestive. The rank of countries has been by far the most popularized use of the index, but the scores themselves are actually much more revealing, as the examples below demonstrate.
Some examples (for 1999, from the 2001 report):
|154||Central African Republic||0.372|
Please consult one of the sources in Resources for the most current scores.
The complete annual Human Development Report, which contains the human development index scores and an explanation of the methodology, is made available as a pdf file each year at the web site:
The printed version in English of the Human Development Report is published by the Oxford University Press.
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Last revised: 2 August 2002.