Pros and Cons of Human Development Index

The human development index is a statistic composite index of life expectancy, education and per capita income indicators which are used to rank countries into four tiers of human development. The four tiers of development are: very high, high, medium and low.

The dimensions that are measured include health, education and living standards. The health indicator is life expectancy at birth, education includes mean years of schooling and expected years of schooling.

Pros and Cons of Human Development Index

Pros of the Human Development Index

  1. It does not rank countries basing on income alone

The human development index takes into consideration many indicators hence the country’s development is not only ranked depending on the income it earns.

  1. It gives an overall index of economic development

It considers other indicators which include: health, education and this information assist the country to know the level at which the country is in all indicators.

  1. It gives rough ability to make comparisons of economic welfare

Through the human development index, a country will be able to compare its economic welfare with other countries and know the areas that need to be improved.

  1. It gives information on areas that require improvement

The country can know which areas require a lot of improvements hence investing in the area much for it to achieve the best results.

  1. Assists in decision making for areas having wide disparities

The country can use the information to make decisions on how to curb the areas with wide disparities maybe by allocating more resources to the areas.

  1. Focuses more on social and human development

The information received makes a country to focus more on social and human development by providing the necessary facilities for the areas to develop.

Cons of the Human Development Index

  1. It does not take into account environmental factors

The information received does not take in to account the environmental factors that may be hindering the development in the area hence not got an aspect to measure growth.

  1. Unreliable data

The data collected may be unreliable in that the one taking the data may not take in to account the relevant information that is required hence making the information not complete to be used to evaluate a country.

  1. It does not show internal disparities

The data collected does not show internal disparities and this may make the country not consider internal factors that affect certain areas.

  1. Does not measure factors such as human rights, gender, and corruption

These factors may affect an area and make it not to grow as compared to other areas so they are to be observed when the statistics are being taken.

  1. Difficult to compare literacy levels

It may be difficult for the researchers to get information about the literacy levels hence the information collected about education may not have all the needed information.

  1. Reflects long term changes

This may not take into consideration the short term changes hence the information such as on life expectancy may not be reliable.


The human development index is necessary for a country as it may use the information to distribute resources. Other factors that may affect the development are to be put into consideration as they will make the data collected very true abut an area hence the country can work towards improving on them.

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