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A Household-Based Human Development Index

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  • Harttgen, Kenneth
  • Klasen, Stephan

Abstract

One of the most serious weaknesses of the human development index (HDI) is that it does not take into account the distribution of human development within a country. All attempts to capture inequality in the HDI have used aggregate information and there exists no HDI at the household level. We provide a method for proxying the HDI at the household level. This allows the immediate analysis of human development by population subgroups and/or socioeconomic characteristics as well as analysis of inequality in human development across population subgroups and households characteristics. We illustrate our approach for 15 developing countries. Inequality in the HDI is stunningly large for some countries, particularly in countries with low overall human development, driven mostly by very high inequality in the education and income components of the HDI.

Suggested Citation

  • Harttgen, Kenneth & Klasen, Stephan, 2012. "A Household-Based Human Development Index," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 40(5), pages 878-899.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:wdevel:v:40:y:2012:i:5:p:878-899
    DOI: 10.1016/j.worlddev.2011.09.011
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    Cited by:

    1. David Mayer-Foulkes, 2013. "A Cross-country Causal Panorama of Human Development and Sustainability," Review of Development Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 17(2), pages 235-251, May.
    2. Carmen Herrero Blanco & Ricardo Martínez & Antonio Villar Notario, 2017. "Population Structure and the Human Development Index," Working Papers. Serie AD 2017-04, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
    3. Kenneth Harttgen & Stephan Klasen & Sebastian Vollmer, 2013. "An African Growth Miracle? Or: What do Asset Indices Tell Us About Trends in Economic Performance?," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 59, pages 37-61, October.
    4. repec:gam:jsusta:v:8:y:2016:i:2:p:121:d:63084 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. García-Peñalosa, Cecilia & Konte, Maty, 2014. "Why Are Women Less Democratic Than Men? Evidence from Sub-Saharan African Countries," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 104-119.
    6. Lukas Schrott & Martin Gaechter & Engelbert Theurl, 2015. "Regional Development in Advanced Countries: A Within-country Application of the Human Development Index for Austria," DANUBE: Law and Economics Review, European Association Comenius - EACO, issue 1, pages 1-23, March.
    7. Eduardo Zambrano, 2014. "An axiomatization of the human development index," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 42(4), pages 853-872, April.
    8. Débora Viana e Sousa Pereira & Caroline Maria de Miranda Mota, 2016. "Human Development Index Based on ELECTRE TRI-C Multicriteria Method: An Application in the City of Recife," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 125(1), pages 19-45, January.
    9. Greenstein Joshua, 2015. "New Patterns of Structural Change and Effects on Inclusive Development: A Case Study of South Africa and Brazil," WIDER Working Paper Series 006, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    10. 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.
    11. 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: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 109(3), pages 395-411, December.
    12. Liu, Chia & Esteve, Albert & Treviño, Rocío, 2017. "Female-Headed Households and Living Conditions in Latin America," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 90(C), pages 311-328.
    13. Fang Yang & Shiying Pan & Xin Yao, 2016. "Regional Convergence and Sustainable Development in China," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 8(2), pages 1-15, January.
    14. repec:eee:ehbiol:v:29:y:2018:i:c:p:179-188 is not listed on IDEAS
    15. Giménez, Víctor & Ayvar-Campos, Francisco Javier & Navarro-Chávez, José César Lenin, 2017. "Efficiency in the generation of social welfare in Mexico: A proposal in the presence of bad outputs," Omega, Elsevier, vol. 69(C), pages 43-52.
    16. Débora Pereira & Caroline Mota, 2016. "Human Development Index Based on ELECTRE TRI-C Multicriteria Method: An Application in the City of Recife," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 125(1), pages 19-45, January.
    17. repec:pal:eurjdr:v:29:y:2017:i:5:d:10.1057_s41287-016-0071-2 is not listed on IDEAS
    18. Michener, Gregory, 2015. "Policy Evaluation via Composite Indexes: Qualitative Lessons from International Transparency Policy Indexes," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 74(C), pages 184-196.
    19. David Mayer-Foulkes, 2011. "A Causal Panorama of Cross-Country Human Development," DEGIT Conference Papers c016_049, DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade.
    20. Gisselquist, Rachel M., 2013. "Evaluating Governance Indexes: Critical and Less Critical Questions," WIDER Working Paper Series 068, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    human development index; income inequality; differential mortality; inequality in education;

    JEL classification:

    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General
    • I32 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Measurement and Analysis of Poverty
    • O10 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - General
    • O50 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - General

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