Essay on Determination of HDI

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Determination of HDI

The HDI is one of many methods of determining human development, first introduced by the United Nations Program. It does not only focus on a country's economic wealth instead it looks at social, cultural and welfare criteria in a order to determine a country's quality of life.

HDI is calculated by using three factors chosen by the UN. These can be seen below:

1. Average life expectancy

2. Adult literacy rate

3. Income (GDP per capita)

These three indicators are combined and a rank is calculated from the highest (1.0) to the lowest (0) HDI. For example Canada which has the highest HDI of 0.961 has the highest GDP of US$21,916. The adult literacy rate
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The difference between the value achieved by a country and the maximum possible value shows how far the country has to reach. For example Ethiopia has to travel further (0.708) to reach up to Canada, compared to France which has a difference of 0.014 HDI.

(b) Examine the Problems of Defining Development (20)

Different phrases and words have been used to try and describe differences between countries e.g. developed and developing, first world and third world, and more recently MEDCs and LEDCs. Development is very difficult to define as it has a wide range of meanings and has therefore been used in a variety of ways, by different people or organizations at different times. For example, geographers will link development with improvements in human welfare e.g. greater wealth, better education and health, whereas others would measure development in terms of HDI (human development index).

Normally when we look at the world we live in, we compare it with our own level of advancement and come to the conclusion that we are better off, have a better standard of living. Whereas when we think about the 'Third World' we maintain our 'eurocentric' attitudes. For example when we look at problems in the developing countries we try and relate the problems to our own when they are not on the same scale.

In 1980 the Brandt Report divided the world into
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