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Did population well-being improve during Porfirian Mexico? An approximation using a Quasi-Index of human development


  • Raymundo M. Campos-Vázquez

    () (El Colegio de México)

  • Roberto Vélez-Grajales

    () (Centro de Estudios Espinosa Yglesias)


It is argued that economic growth during the Porfiriato did not improve the well-being of Mexican population. One explanation for such result is that economic growth pattern was skewed and benefited more the northern states and less the southern ones. Following the estimation method of the Human Development Index (HDI), we calculate a Human Development Quasi-Index for the Mexican states during the period 1895-1910. Results show that starting the period (1895) the northern states were already the most developed. During the next 15 year this pattern was maintained and the dispersion in human development increased marginally. Finally, it is shown that the true losers of Porfiriato were the states surrounding Mexico City and not the southern ones.

Suggested Citation

  • Raymundo M. Campos-Vázquez & Roberto Vélez-Grajales, 2010. "Did population well-being improve during Porfirian Mexico? An approximation using a Quasi-Index of human development," Serie documentos de trabajo del Centro de Estudios Económicos 2010-13, El Colegio de México, Centro de Estudios Económicos.
  • Handle: RePEc:emx:ceedoc:2010-13

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    human development; well-being; Mexico; Porfiriato;

    JEL classification:

    • I30 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General
    • N36 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - Latin America; Caribbean
    • O10 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - General

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