Human Development Index

World map indicating the Human Development Index (based on 2015 and 2016 data, published on 21 March 2017).
  Data unavailable
World map of the Human Development Index by country, grouped by quartiles (based on 2015 and 2016 data, published on 21 March 2017).
  Highest 25%
  Above median
  Below median
  Lowest 25%
  Data unavailable

The Human Development Index (HDI) is a statistic (composite index) of life expectancy, education, and per capita income indicators, which are used to rank countries into four tiers of human development. A country scores higher HDI when the lifespan is higher, the education level is higher, and the GDP per capita is higher. The HDI was developed by Pakistani economist Mahbub ul Haq and Indian economist Amartya Sen which was further used to measure the country's development by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).[1][2]

The 2010 Human Development Report introduced an Inequality-adjusted Human Development Index (IHDI). While the simple HDI remains useful, it stated that "the IHDI is the actual level of human development (accounting for inequality)", and "the HDI can be viewed as an index of 'potential' human development (or the maximum IHDI that could be achieved if there were no inequality)".

The index is based on the human development approach, developed by Ul Haq, often framed in terms of whether people are able to "be" and "do" desirable things in life. Examples include—Being: well fed, sheltered, healthy; Doings: work, education, voting, participating in community life. It must also be noted that the freedom of choice is central—someone choosing to be hungry (e.g. during a religious fast) is quite different to someone who is hungry because they cannot afford to buy food.[3]


The origins of the HDI are found in the annual Human Development Reports produced by the Human Development Reports Office of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). These were devised and launched by Pakistani economist Mahbub ul Haq in 1990, and had the explicit purpose "to shift the focus of development economics from national income accounting to people-centered policies". To produce the Human Development Reports, Mahbub ul Haq formed a group of development economists including Paul Streeten, Frances Stewart, Gustav Ranis, Keith Griffin, Sudhir Anand, and Meghnad Desai. Nobel laureate Amartya Sen utilized Haq's work in his own work on human capabilities.[2] Haq believed that a simple composite measure of human development was needed to convince the public, academics, and politicians that they can and should evaluate development not only by economic advances but also improvements in human well-being.

The underlying principle behind the Human Development Index.[3]
Other Languages
føroyskt: HDI
hrvatski: HDI
Bahasa Indonesia: Indeks Pembangunan Manusia
مازِرونی: اچ‌دی‌آی
norsk: HDI
Plattdüütsch: Human Development Index
саха тыла: HDI
Simple English: Human Development Index
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Indeks ljudskog razvoja