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Inequality, Interactions, and Human Development

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  • Suman Seth

Abstract

The Human Development Index, which is multidimensional by construction, is criticized on the ground that it is insensitive to any form of inequality across persons. Inequality in the multidimensional context can take two distinct forms. The first pertains to the spread of the distribution across persons, analogous to unidimensional inequality. The second, in contrast, deals with interactions among dimensions. The second form of inequality is important as dimensional interactions may alter individual level evaluations as well as overall inequality. Recently proposed indices have incorporated only the first form of inequality, but not the second. It is an important omission. This paper proposes a two-parameter class of Human Development Indices that reflects sensitivity to both forms of inequality. It is revealed how consideration of interactions among dimensions affects policy recommendations. Finally, the indices are applied to the year 2000 Mexican census data to contrast the present approach with the existing approaches.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Journal of Human Development and Capabilities.

Volume (Year): 10 (2009)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
Pages: 375-396

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Handle: RePEc:taf:jhudca:v:10:y:2009:i:3:p:375-396

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Related research

Keywords: Human Development Index; Multidimensional welfare; Multidimensional inequality; Association-sensitive inequality; Generalized means; Mexican census data; Measurement;

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Cited by:
  1. Gerhard Kockläuner, 2013. "Die neuen Indizes des Bericht über die menschliche Entwicklung 2010," AStA Wirtschafts- und Sozialstatistisches Archiv, Springer, vol. 7(3), pages 121-133, December.
  2. Suman Seth, 2013. "A class of distribution and association sensitive multidimensional welfare indices," Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer, vol. 11(2), pages 133-162, June.
  3. Eduardo Zambrano, 2014. "An axiomatization of the human development index," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer, vol. 42(4), pages 853-872, April.
  4. Permanyer, Iñaki, 2013. "Using Census Data to Explore the Spatial Distribution of Human Development," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 46(C), pages 1-13.
  5. Sabina Alkire & James Foster, 2010. "Designing the Inequality-Adjusted Human Development Index (IHDI)," Human Development Research Papers (2009 to present) HDRP-2010-28, Human Development Report Office (HDRO), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
  6. Olgica Bošković & Nikola Njegovan, 2012. "Gender Inequality In The Labour Market In Serbia," Economic Annals, Faculty of Economics, University of Belgrade, vol. 57(192), pages 113–136, January â.
  7. Ángeles Sánchez-Domínguez & Maria J. Ruiz Martos, 2013. "Europe 2020 strategy: a strategy for which type of growth?," ThE Papers 13/11, Department of Economic Theory and Economic History of the University of Granada..
  8. Hill, Ronald Paul & Capella, Michael L., 2014. "Impoverished consumers, Catholic social teaching, and distributive justice," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 32-41.
  9. Leßmann, Ortrud, 2011. "Empirische Studien zum Capability Ansatz auf der Grundlage von Befragungen: Ein Überblick," UFZ Discussion Papers 4/2011, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ), Division of Social Sciences (ÖKUS).
  10. Antonio Villar, 2012. "The Educational Development Index: A Multidimensional Approach to Educational Achievements through PISA," Working Papers 12.06, Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Department of Economics.
  11. Beja, Edsel Jr., 2012. "Yet, two more revisions to the Human Development Index," MPRA Paper 38939, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  12. Luis Lopez-Calva & Eduardo Ortiz-Juarez, 2012. "A Household-Based Distribution-Sensitive Human Development Index: An Empirical Application to Mexico, Nicaragua and Peru," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 109(3), pages 395-411, December.
  13. Gaëlle Ferrant, 2014. "The Multidimensional Gender Inequalities Index (MGII): A Descriptive Analysis of Gender Inequalities Using MCA," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 115(2), pages 653-690, January.

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