2011 Human Development Report announced, Turkey increased Human Development Index

02 Nov 2011

Development progress in the world’s poorest countries could be halted or even reversed by mid-century unless bold steps are taken now to slow climate change, prevent further environmental damage, and reduce deep inequalities within and among nations, according to projections in the 2011 Human Development Report, launched by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) here today.

The 2011 Report ‘Sustainability and Equity: A Better Future for All’ was launched in Copenhagen today by UNDP Administrator Helen Clark with Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt, whose new government has pledged to reduce Denmark’s CO2 emissions by a dramatic 40 percent over the next 10 years. The UN Resident Coordinator and the UNDP Resident Representative in Turkey Mr. Shahid Najam launched the Report in Turkey in the Bilgi University in İstanbul.

The Report adds its voice to those urging consideration of an international currency trading tax or broader financial transaction levies to fund the fight against climate change and extreme poverty.  A tax of just 0.005 percent on foreign exchange trading could raise US$40 billion yearly or more, the Report estimates

Norway Ranks First in the Human Development Index

To accompany the Human Development Index this year’s Report provides a variety of policies, data and other findings as in previous years.

Countries like Norway, Australia and the Netherlands are the top-ranking countries in the 2011 Human Development Index (HDI) whereas the Democratic Republic of Congo, Niger and Burundi are among the last.

As the United States of America, New Zealand, Canada, Ireland, Lichtenstein, Germany and Sweden ranked among the first ten countries in the 2011 Human Development Report, after the amendments that came under the Report’s chapters on health, education and income, some of the wealthiest countries of the world were left out of the first 20; USA receded back to #23 from #4, Korea to #32 from #15 and Israel to #25 from #17 in the list.

The USA and Israel were re-ranked as above especially due to their income equalities in the   Inequality Adjusted Human Development Index (IHDI) of the Report. Among other countries that were relatively more equitable in health, education and income, Sweden for example, went up from #10 to # 5 in the list; Denmark from #16 to #12 and Slovenia from #21 to #14.

Number of countries and territories involved in the 2010 Human Development Report, which was 169, was increased to a record level, 187 countries and territories in the 2011 Report to include more comprehensive data on the Caribbean and the small island states of the Pacific. The authors for this reason say that the country rankings in the 2011 Human Development Report are not comparable to those in the 2010 Report.

Turkey Ensures  A Real Improvement of its HDI Value and Ranking

Turkey’s HDI value for 2011 is 0.699—in the high human development category—positioning the country at 92 out of 187 countries and territories. Between 1980 and 2011, Turkey’s HDI value increased from 0.463 to 0.699, an increase of 51.0 per cent or average annual increase of about 1.3 per cent.

The rank of Turkey’s HDI for 2010 was 83rd among 169 countries However, it could be misleading to compare values and rankings with those of previously published reports, because the underlying data and methods have changed, as well as the number of countries included in the HDI.

When real HDI values are compared, it is seen that Turkey has gone up three more steps in the 2011 index than in 2010.

The Turkish Gross National Income (GNI), which was relatively less affected by the financial crisis, and the fact that the life expectancy at birth has increased to 74 years from the previous 72,2 years have played an important role in this improvement in Turkey’s real value in the Human Development Index.

Between 1980 and 2011, Turkey’s life expectancy at birth increased by 17.4 years, mean years of schooling increased by 3.6 years and expected years of schooling increased by 4.9 years.  Turkey’s GNI per capita increased by about 119.0 per cent between 1980 and 2011.

However, Turkey’s 2011 HDI of 0.699 is below the average of 0.741 for countries in the high human development group and below the average of 0.751 for countries in Europe and Central Asia.

When the value is ‘discounted’ for inequality, the HDI falls to 0.542, a loss of 22.5 per cent due to inequality in the distribution of the dimension indices.

The IHDI and two other composite indices—the Multidimensional Poverty Index and the Gender Inequality Index—were designed to complement the Human Development Report’s HDI, which is based on national averages in schooling, life expectancy, and per capita income.

Gender Inequality Index and Turkey

The Gender Inequality Index (GII) shows that Sweden leads the world in gender equality, as measured by this composite index of reproductive health, years of schooling, parliamentary representation, and participation in the labor market. The Netherlands, Denmark, Switzerland, Finland, Norway, Germany, Singapore, Iceland and France follow Sweden in the gender inequality rankings.

Among the 146 countries covered in the GII, Yemen has the most widespread gender inequality.

Turkey has a GII value of 0.443, ranking it 77 out of 146 countries in the 2011 index. In Turkey, women hold 9.1 per cent of parliamentary seats, and 27.1 per cent of adult women have reached a secondary or higher level of education compared to 46.7 per cent of their male counterparts. For every 100,000 live births, 23 women die from pregnancy related causes; and the adolescent fertility rate is 39.2 births per 1000 live births. Female participation in the labor market is 24.0 per cent compared to 69.6 for men.

Multidimensional Poverty Index and Turkey

The Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) examines factors at the family level—such as access to clean water and cooking fuel and health services, as well as basic household goods and home construction standards—that together provide a fuller portrait of poverty than income measurements alone. 

Niger has the highest share of multidimensionally poor, at 92 percent of the population, the Report says, followed by Ethiopia and Mali, with 89 percent and 87 percent, respectively. The 10 poorest nations as measured by the MPI are all in sub-Saharan Africa. But the largest group of multidimensionally poor is South Asian: India, Pakistan and Bangladesh have some of the highest absolute numbers of MPI poor. 

The most recent survey data that were publically available for Turkey’s MPI estimation refer to 2003.  In Turkey 6.6 per cent of the population suffer multiple deprivations while an additional 7.3 per cent are vulnerable to multiple deprivations.  The breadth of deprivation (intensity) in Turkey, which is the average percentage of deprivation experienced by people in multidimensional poverty, is 42.0 per cent. The MPI, which is the share of the population that is multi-dimensionally poor, adjusted by the intensity of the deprivations, is 0.028.

About the Human Development Index (HDI)

The HDI has been published annually since the first Human Development Report in 1990 as an alternative measurement of national development, challenging purely economic assessments of progress such as Gross Domestic Product.  HDI rankings are recalculated annually using the latest internationally comparable data for health, education and income. The Inequality adjusted HDI (IHDI) was introduced along with the Gender Inequality Index (GII) and Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) in last year’s Human Development Report to complement the original HDI, which as a composite measure of national averages does not reflect internal inequalities. Due to data limitations these composite indexes do not gauge other factors considered equally essential elements of human development, such as civic engagement, environmental sustainability or the quality of education and health standards.

About this report

The annual Human Development Report is an editorially independent publication of the United Nations Development Programme. For free downloads of the 2011 Human Development Report in ten languages, plus additional reference materials on its indices and specific regional implications, please visit: http://hdr.undp.org.

About UNDP

Please visit: www.undp.org