Norway is the world’s top ranked country in the recently released Human Development Index 2019. Switzerland and Ireland occupy the next two spots while Germany is tied with Hong Kong at fourth.
Not surprisingly, developed countries dominate the rankings, with 21 out of the top 30 being European countries. The top ten countries in the index are all from either Europe or Asia Pacific. Canada is ranked 13th, while United Kingdom and United States are tied at the 15th place. The top ranked country in South America is Chile (42nd) while that in mainland Africa is Algeria (82nd). Russia is ranked 49th.
Top 20 Countries
The top 20 countries in the Human Development Index 2019 all have an HDI value between 0.96 and 0.91. They are ranked as follows.
- Hong Kong
- New Zealand
- United Kingdom
- United States
Human Development Index
The Human Development Index (HDI) has been computed annually since 1990 by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP). The HDI was developed by a Pakistani economist, Mahbub ul Haq, in an attempt to more accurately represent human development and welfare than using mere income figures for the purpose.
The HDI is updated annually and released as part of the Human Development Report, prepared independently by the UNDP. The HDI, with its emphasis on the human dimension, is among the most commonly used indicators of development today.
The HDI is based on three major dimensions of human life: health, education, and income. The three are together representative of people’s standard of living and the ease of access to basic facilities. The HDI is constructed using the averages of life expectancy at birth, expected schooling years, mean schooling years, and gross national income (GNI) per capita.
Since 2010, inequality-adjusted indexes are also included in the Human Development Report to better reflect the state of economic and social inequality across countries.
The 189 countries included in the index are categorized into four levels of human development: very high, high, medium, and low, depending on their HDI values. The top 62 countries, with an HDI value of 0.8 or greater, are all in the “very high” category. The HDI value for the world as a whole is 0.731, which places it in the “high” category – ranked 93rd among countries.
The Human Development Report 2019 is available for download on the UNDP website.
Categories: Global Rankings