Thursday, November 4, 2010

In spite of coconuts and owls, the world is becoming a better place...right? According to The Economist it very well may be...

Is the world becoming a better place? The chart below suggests that since 1980 many places that were extremely poor (based on the criteria for this index) in 1980 are much better places for people today. (Note: As a Marine I was served at the US Embassy in Mali in 1981-83).  I also see good news in the bad news--if you look at the counties on the right side of the chart only one is still declining. The others are still bad, but relatively speaking, are improving.  Is it good enough ? No, but it is nice to see by some measure the world is becoming less dire for more and more people.  Also, can anyone suggest why the years 2000-05 seems to be pivotal years for the countries on the right to head for an improved human index? I am at a loss off the top of my head as to a reasonable explanation...Any suggestions???

Developing Humans: Some countries are making great strides in human development, others less so

Since 1980 the country that has made the greatest strides in improving human development is Nepal, according to the UN’s annual Human Development Index (HDI). The index is a combination of three sub-indices covering wealth, health and education. The countries whose HDI has improved the most since 1980 are mainly in Asia. China and India have been helped by rapid GDP growth, but even slower-growing countries such as Nepal and Bangladesh have fostered human development by making progress in health and education. The countries where HDI has improved the least are mainly in Africa, with Zimbabwe at the bottom of the pile.

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