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Human Development Report 2013 – The Rise of the South: Human Progress in a Diverse World - Summary

Summary by UNDP, 2013

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The Human Development Report examines the profound shift in global dynamics driven by the fast-rising new powers of the developing world and its long-term implications for human development. It identifies more than 40 countries and analyzes the causes and consequences of their achievements and related challenges. The report specifically looks at the strategies of those countries which lifted their HDI value substantially between 1990 and 2012.




Empowered lives.
Resilient nations.


Human Development
Report 2013
The Rise of the South:
Human Progress in a Diverse World

Copyright © 2013
by the United Nations Development Programme
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Human Development Report 2013 team

Director and lead author
Khalid Malik

Research and statistics
Maurice Kugler (Head of Research), Milorad Kovacevic (Chief Statistician), Subhra Bhattacharjee, Astra Bonini, Cecilia
Calderón, Alan Fuchs, Amie Gaye, Iana Konova, Arthur Minsat, Shivani Nayyar, José Pineda and Swarnim Waglé

Communications and publishing
William Orme (Chief of Communications), Botagoz Abdreyeva, Carlotta Aiello, Eleonore Fournier-Tombs, Jean-Yves
Hamel, Scott Lewis and Samantha Wauchope

National Human Development Reports
Eva Jespersen (Deputy Director), Christina Hackmann, Jonathan Hall, Mary Ann Mwangi and Paola Pagliani

Operations and administration
Sarantuya Mend (Operations Manager), Ekaterina Berman, Diane Bouopda, Mamaye Gebretsadik and Fe Juarez-Shanahan


Human Development Report 2013

The Rise of the South:
Human Progress in a Diverse World

Empowered lives.
Resilient nations.

Published for the
United Nations

The 2013 Human Development Report, The
Rise of the South: Human Progress in a Diverse
World, looks at the evolving geopolitics of our
times, examining emerging issues and trends
and also the new actors which are shaping the
development landscape.

The Report argues that the striking trans-
formation of a large number of developing
countries into dynamic major economies with
growing political influence is having a signifi-
cant impact on human development progress.

The Report notes that, over the last decade,
all countries accelerated their achievements in
the education, health, and income dimensions
as measured in the Human Development Index
(HDI)—to the extent that no country for
which data was available had a lower HDI val-
ue in 2012 than in 2000. As faster progress was
recorded in lower HDI countries during this
period, there was notable convergence in HDI
values globally, although progress was uneven
within and between regions.

Looking specifically at countries which lifted
their HDI value substantially between 1990
and 2012 on both the income and non-income
dimensions of human development, the Report
examines the strategies which enabled them to
perform well. In this respect, the 2013 Report
makes a significant contribution to develop-
ment thinking by describing specific drivers of
development transformation and by suggesting
future policy priorities that could help sustain
such momentum.

By 2020, according to projections devel-
oped for this Report, the combined economic
output of three leading developing countries
alone—Brazil, China and India—will surpass
the aggregate production of Canada, France,
Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom and the
United States. Much of this expansion is being
driven by new trade and technology partner-
ships within the South itself, as this Report also

A key message contained in this and previous
Human Development Reports, however, is that
economic growth alone does not automatically
translate into human development progress.
Pro-poor policies and significant investments

in people’s capabilities—through a focus on ed-
ucation, nutrition and health, and employment
skills—can expand access to decent work and
provide for sustained progress.

The 2013 Report identifies four specific
areas of focus for sustaining development
momentum: enhancing equity, including on
the gender dimension; enabling greater voice
and participation of citizens, including youth;
confronting environmental pressures; and man-
aging demographic change.

The Report also suggests that as global de-
velopment challenges become more complex
and transboundary in nature, coordinated
action on the most pressing challenges of our
era, whether they be poverty eradication, cli-
mate change, or peace and security, is essential.
As countries are increasingly interconnected
through trade, migration, and information
and communications technologies, it is no
surprise that policy decisions in one place
have substantial impacts elsewhere. The crises
of recent years—food, financial, climate—
which have blighted the lives of so many point
to this, and to the importance of working to
reduce people’s vulnerability to shocks and

To harness the wealth of knowledge, ex-
pertise, and development thinking in the
South, the Report calls for new institutions
which can facilitate regional integration and
South–South cooperation. Emerging powers
in the developing world are already sources of
innovative social and economic policies and
are major trade, investment, and increasingly
development cooperation partners for other
developing countries.

Many other countries across the South have
seen rapid development, and their experiences
and South–South cooperation are equally an
inspiration to development policy. UNDP is
able to play a useful role as a knowledge broker,
and as a convener of partners—governments,
civil society and multinational companies—to
share experiences. We have a key role too in
facilitating learning and capacity building. This
Report offers very useful insights for our future
engagement in South–South cooperation.

ii | Human Development RepoRt 2013

Finally, the Report also calls for a critical look
at global governance institutions to promote a
fairer, more equal world. It points to outdated
structures, which do not reflect the new eco-
nomic and geopolitical reality described, and
considers options for a new era of partnership.
It also calls for greater transparency and ac-
countability, and highlights the role of global
civil society in advocating for this and for
greater decision-making power for those most
directly affected by global challenges, who are
often the poorest and most vulnerable people
in our world.

As discussion continues on the global devel-
opment agenda beyond 2015, I hope many will

take the time to read this Report and reflect
on its lessons for our fast-changing world.
The Report refreshes our understanding of
the current state of global development, and
demonstrates how much can be learned from
the experiences of fast development progress in
so many countries in the South.

Helen Clark
United Nations Development Programme

SummaRy | iii

Contents of the 2013 Human Development Report



The state of human development

Progress of nations

Social integration

Human security


A more global South

Rebalancing: a more global world, a more global South

Impetus from human development

Innovation and entrepreneurship in the South

New forms of cooperation

Sustaining progress in uncertain times


Drivers of development transformation

Driver 1: a proactive developmental state

Driver 2: tapping of global markets

Driver 3: determined social policy innovation


Sustaining momentum

Policy priorities for developing countries

Modelling demography and education

Impact of the rate of population ageing

The need for ambitious policies

Seizing the moment


Governance and partnerships for a new era

A new global view of public goods

Better representation for the South

Global civil society

Towards coherent pluralism

Responsible sovereignty

New institutions, new mechanisms

Conclusions: partners in a new era




Readers guide

Key to HDI countries and ranks, 2012

Statistical tables
1 Human Development Index and its components

2 Human Development Index trends, 1980–2012

3 Inequality-adjusted Human Development Index

4 Gender Inequality Index

5 Multidimensional Poverty Index

6 Command over resources

7 Health

8 Education

9 Social integration

10 International trade flows of goods and services

11 International capital flows and migration

12 Innovation and technology

13 Environment

14 Population trends


Statistical references

Technical appendix: explanatory note for projections exercise



When developed economies stopped growing during the 2008–2009 financial crisis but developing economies kept on
growing, the world took notice. the rise of the South, seen within the developing world as an overdue global rebalancing,
has been much commented on since. this discussion has typically focused narrowly on GDp and trade growth in a few
large countries. yet there are broader dynamics at play, involving many more countries and deeper trends, with potentially
far-reaching implications for people’s lives, for social equity and for democratic governance at the local and global levels. as
this Report shows, the rise of the South is both the result of continual human development investments and achievements
and an opportunity for still greater human progress for the world as a whole. making that progress a reality will require
informed and enlightened global and national policymaking, drawing on the policy lessons analysed in this Report.

The rise of the South

The rise of the South is unprecedented in its
speed and scale. It must be understood in broad
human development terms as the story of a dra-
matic expansion of individual capabilities and
sustained human development progress in the
countries that are home to the vast majority of
the world’s people. When dozens of countries
and billions of people move up the develop-
ment ladder, as they are doing today, it has a
direct impact on wealth creation and broader
human progress in all countries and regions
of the world. There are new opportunities for
catch-up for less developed countries and for
creative policy initiatives that could benefit the
most advanced economies as well.

Although most developing countries have
done well, a large number of countries have
done particularly well—what can be called
the “rise of the South”. Some of the largest
countries have made rapid advances, notably
Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Mexico, South
Africa and Turkey. But there has also been sub-
stantial progress in smaller economies, such as
Bangladesh, Chile, Ghana, Mauritius, Rwanda
and Tunisia (figure 1).

While focusing on the rise of the South and
its implications for human development, the
2013 Human Development Report is also about
this changing world, driven in large measure by
the rise of the South. It examines the progress
being made, the challenges arising (some as a
result of that very success) and the opportu-
nities emerging for representative global and
regional governance.

For the first time in 150 years, the com-
bined output of the developing world’s three

leading economies—Brazil, China and
India—is about equal to the combined GDP
of the long standing industrial powers of the
North—Canada, France, Germany, Italy,
United Kingdom and the United States. This
represents a dramatic rebalancing of global

FIGuRe 1

More than 40 countries of the South experienced significantly greater HDI gains
since 1990 than would have been predicted based on their previous HDI performance

HDI, 2012

HDI, 1990

OthersBig improversHighlighted 18








Korea, Rep.





Viet Nam


I 19

= H

DI 2


0.1 0.3 0.5 0.7 0.9





Note: Countries above the 45 degree line had a higher HDI value in 2012 than in 1990. Blue and grey markers indicate countries with
significantly larger than predicted increases in HDI value between 1990 and 2012 given their HDI value in 1990. these countries were
identified based on residuals obtained from a regression of the change in log of HDI between 2012 and 1990 on the log of HDI in 1990.
Countries that are labelled are a selected group of rapid HDI improvers that are discussed in greater detail in chapter 3 of the full Report.
Source: HDRo calculations.

SummaRy | 1

the South is emerging
alongside the North as
a breeding ground for

technical innovation and
creative entrepreneurship

economic power: In 1950, Brazil, China and
India together represented only 10% of the
world economy, while the six traditional
economic leaders of the North accounted for
more than half. According to projections in the
Report, by 2050, Brazil, China and India will
together account for 40% of global output (fig-
ure 2), far surpassing the projected combined
production of today’s Group of Seven bloc.

The middle class in the South is growing rap-
idly in size, income and expectations (figure 3).
The sheer number of people in the South—the
billions of consumers and citizens—multiplies
the global human development consequences
of actions by governments, companies and
international institutions in the South. The
South is now emerging alongside the North as
a breeding ground for technical innovation and
creative entrepreneurship. In North–South
trade, the newly industrializing economies
have built capabilities to efficiently manufac-
ture complex products for developed country
markets. But South–South interactions have

enabled companies in the South to adapt and
innovate with products and processes that are
better suited to local needs.

The state of human development

The Human Development Index (HDI) in
2012 reveals much progress. Over the past
decades, countries across the world have been
converging towards higher levels of human de-
velopment. The pace of HDI progress has been
fastest in countries in the low and medium
human development categories. This is good
news. Yet progress requires more than average
improvement in the HDI. It will be neither de-
sirable nor sustainable if increases in the HDI
are accompanied by rising inequalities in in-
come, unsustainable patterns of consumption,
high military spending and low social cohesion
(box 1).

An essential part of human development
is equity. Every person has the right to live

FIGuRe 2

Brazil, China and India combined are projected to account for 40% of global output by 2050, up from 10% in

Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom and the United StatesBrazil, China and India

Share of global output (%)










Note: output is measured in 1990 purchasing power parity dollars.
Source: HDRo interpolation of historical data from maddison (2010) and projections based on pardee Center for International Futures (2013).

2 | Human Development RepoRt 2013

all developing
countries are not yet
participating fully in
the rise of the South

a fulfilling life according to his or her own
values and aspirations. No one should be
doomed to a short life or a miserable one
because he or she happens to be from the
“wrong” class or country, the “wrong” ethnic
group or race or the “wrong” sex. Inequality
reduces the pace of human development and
in some cases may even prevent it entirely.
Globally, there have been much greater reduc-
tions in inequality in health and education in
the last two decades than in income (figure
4). Virtually all studies agree that global in-
come inequality is high, though there is no
consensus on recent trends.

A more global South

Global production is rebalancing in ways not
seen for 150 years. Growth in the cross-border
movement of goods, services, people and ideas
has been remarkable. By 2011, trade accounted
for nearly 60% of global output. Developing
countries have played a big part in this (box 2):
between 1980 and 2010, they increased their
share of world merchandise trade from 25% to
47% and their share of world output from 33%
to 45%. Developing regions have also been
strengthening links with each other: between
1980 and 2011, South–South trade as a share
of world merchandise trade rose from 8.1% to
26.7% (figure 5).

All developing countries are not yet partici-
pating fully in the rise of the South. The pace of
change is slower, for instance, in most of the 49
least developed countries, especially those that
are landlocked or distant from world markets.
Nevertheless, many of these countries have
also begun to benefit from South–South trade,
investment, finance and technology transfer.
There have, for example, been positive growth
spillovers from China to other developing
countries, particularly close trading partners.
These benefits have to some extent offset slack-
ening demand from the developed countries.
Growth in low-income countries would have
been an estimated 0.3–1.1  percentage points
lower in 2007–2010 had growth fallen at the
same rate in China and India as in developed

Many countries have also benefited from
spillovers into sectors that contribute to human

development, especially health. Indian firms,
for example, are supplying affordable medi-
cines, medical equipment, and information
and communications technology products and
services to countries in Africa. Brazilian and
South African companies are doing the same in
their regional markets.

Nevertheless, exports from larger countries
can also have disadvantages. Large countries
generate competitive pressures in smaller
countries that can stifle economic diversifica-
tion and industrialization. But there are also
instances where competitive jolts have been
followed by industrial revival. A competitive
role today may easily turn into a complemen-
tary role tomorrow. Moving from competition
to cooperation seems to depend on policies for
dealing with new challenges.

Drivers of development

Many countries have made substantial progress
over the past two decades: the rise of the South
has been fairly broad-based. Nevertheless,
several high achievers have not only boosted

FIGuRe 3

The middle class in the South is projected to continue to grow

Middle class population (billions)

2020 20302009

1.845 billion

3.249 billion

4.884 billion


Central and South America

North America

Sub-Saharan AfricaMiddle East and North Africa

.664 .703







.338 .333

.181 .251



Note: the middle class includes people earning or spending $10–$100 a day (in 2005 purchasing power parity terms).
Source: Brookings Institution 2012.

SummaRy | 3

national income, but have also had better than
average performance on social indicators such
as health and education (figure 6).

How have so many countries in the South
transformed their human development pros-
pects? Across most of these countries, there
have been three notable drivers of develop-
ment: a proactive developmental state, tapping
of global markets and determined social policy
and innovation. These drivers are not derived

from abstract conceptions of how development
should work; rather, they are demonstrated
by the transformational development experi-
ences of many countries in the South. Indeed,
they challenge preconceived and prescriptive
approaches: on the one hand, they set aside
a number of collectivist, centrally managed
precepts; on the other hand, they diverge from
the unfettered liberalization espoused by the
Washington Consensus.

Box 1 Amartya Sen, Nobel Laureate in Economics

What is it like to be a human being?

almost half a century ago, the philosopher thomas nagel published a fa-
mous paper called “What Is It like to Be a Bat?” the question I want to ask
is: what is it like to be a human being? as it happens, tom nagel’s insight-
ful paper in The Philosophical Review was also really about human beings,
and only marginally about bats. among other points, nagel expressed deep
scepticism about the temptation of observational scientists to identify the
experience of being a bat—or similarly, a human being—with the associ-
ated physical phenomena in the brain and elsewhere in the body that are
within easy reach of outside inspection. the sense of being a bat or a human
can hardly be seen as just having certain twitches in the brain and of the
body. the complexity of the former cannot be resolved by the easier tracta-
bility of the latter (tempting though it may be to do just that).

the cutting edge of the human development approach is also based on a
distinction —but of a rather different kind from nagel’s basic epistemologi-
cal contrast. the approach that mahbub ul Haq pioneered through the series
of Human Development Reports which began in 1990 is that between, on
the one hand, the difficult problem of assessing the richness of human lives,
including the freedoms that human beings have reason to value, and on the
other, the much easier exercise of keeping track of incomes and other exter-
nal resources that persons—or nations—happen to have. Gross domestic
product (GDp) is much easier to see and measure than the quality of human
life that people have. But human well-being and freedom, and their connec-
tion with fairness and justice in the world, cannot be reduced simply to the
measurement of GDp and its growth rate, as many people are tempted to do.

the intrinsic complexity of human development is important to acknowl-
edge, partly because we should not be side-tracked into changing the ques-
tion: that was the central point that moved mahbub ul Haq’s bold initiative to
supplement—and to some extent supplant—GDp. But along with that came
a more difficult point, which is also an inescapable part of what has come
to be called “the human development approach.” We may, for the sake of
convenience, use many simple indicators of human development, such as
the HDI, based on only three variables with a very simple rule for weight-
ing them—but the quest cannot end there. We should not spurn workable
and useful shortcuts—the HDI may tell us a lot more about human quality
of life than does the GDp—but nor should we be entirely satisfied with
the immediate gain captured in these shortcuts in a world of continuous
practice. assessing the quality of life is a much more complex exercise than
what can be captured through only one number, no matter how judicious is
the selection of variables to be included, and the choice of the procedure of

the recognition of complexity has other important implications as well.
the crucial role of public reasoning, which the present Human Development
Report particularly emphasizes, arises partly from the recognition of this
complexity. only the wearer may know where the shoe pinches, but pinch-
avoiding arrangements cannot be effectively undertaken without giving
voice to the people and giving them extensive opportunities for public
discussion. the importance of various elements in evaluating well-being
and freedom of people can be adequately appreciated and assessed only
through persistent dialogue among the population, with an impact on the
making of public policy. the political significance of such initiatives as the
so-called arab Spring, and mass movements elsewhere in the world, is
matched by the epistemic importance of people expressing themselves, in
dialogue with others, on what ails their lives and what injustices they want
to remove. there is much to discuss—with each other and with the public
servants that make policy.

the dialogic responsibilities, when properly appreciated across the
lines of governance, must also include representing the interest of the
people who are not here to express their concerns in their own voice.
Human development cannot be indifferent to future generations just be-
cause they are not here—yet. But human beings do have the capacity to
think about others, and their lives, and the art of responsible and account-
able politics is to broaden dialogues from narrowly self-centred concerns
to the broader social understanding of the importance of the needs and
freedoms of people in the future as well as today. this is not a matter
of simply including those concerns within one single indicator—for ex-
ample, by overcrowding the already heavily loaded HDI (which stands, in
any case, only for current well-being and freedom)—but it certainly is a
matter of making sure that the discussions of human development include
those other concerns. the Human Development Reports can continue to
contribute to this broadening through explication as well as presenting
tables of relevant information.

the human development approach is a major advance in the difficult
exercise of understanding the successes and deprivations of human lives,
and in appreciating the importance of reflection and dialogue, and through
that advancing fairness and justice in the world. We may be much like bats
in not being readily accessible to the measuring rod of the impatient obser-
vational scientist, but we are also capable of thinking and talking about the
many- sided nature of our lives and those of others—today and tomorrow—
in ways that may not be readily available to bats. Being a human being is
both like being a bat and very unlike it.

4 | Human Development RepoRt 2013

Driver 1: a proactive
developmental state

A strong, proactive and responsible state
develops policies for both public and private
sectors—based on a long-term vision and
leadership, shared norms and values, and rules
and institutions that build trust and cohesion.
Achieving enduring transformation requires
countries to chart a consistent and balanced
approach to development. Countries that
have succeeded in igniting sustained growth
in income and human development have not,
however, followed one simple recipe. Faced
with different challenges, they have adopted
varying on market regulation, export promo-
tion, industrial development and technological
adaptation and progress. Priorities need to

be people-centred, promoting opportunities
while protecting people against downside
risks. Governments can nurture industries
that would not otherwise emerge due to in-
complete markets. Although this poses some
political risks of rent seeking and cronyism, it
has enabled several countries of the South to
turn industries previously derided as inefficient
into early drivers of export success once their
economies became more open.

In large and complex societies, the outcome
of any particular policy is inevitably uncertain.
Developmental states need to be pragmatic
and test a range of different approaches. Some
features stand out: for instance, people-friendly
developmental states have expanded basic so-
cial services. Investing in people’s capabilities—
through health, education and other public

FIGuRe 4

Most regions show declining inequality in health and education and rising inequality in income

Loss due to inequality (%) Loss due to inequality (%) Loss due to inequality (%)
















20102005200019951990 20102005200019951990 2005200019951990








Sub-Saharan AfricaSouth Asia Developed

Europe and
Central Asia

Latin America and
the Caribbean

Arab States East Asia and
the Pacic

Note: Based on a population-weighted balanced panel of 182 countries for loss due to health inequality, 144 countries for loss due to education inequality and 66 countries for loss due to income inequality. Data on
income inequality from milanović (2010) are available through 2005.
Source: HDRo calculations using health data from united nations Department of economic and Social affairs life tables, education data from Barro and lee (2010) and income inequality data from milanović (2010).

SummaRy | 5

Box 2

The South’s integration with the world economy and human development

In a sample of 107 developing countries over 1990–2010, about 87% can
be considered globally integrated: they increased their trade to output
ratio, have many substantial trading partnerships1 and maintain a high
trade to output ratio relative to countries at comparable income levels.2
all these developing countries are also much more connected to the world
and with each other: Internet use has expanded dramatically, with the
median annual growth in the number of users exceeding 30% between
2000 and 2010.

While not all globally integrated developing countries have made rapid
gains in Human Development Index (HDI) value, the converse is true. almost
all developing countries that made the most improvement in HDI value rela-
tive to their peers between 1990 and 2012 (at least 45 in the sample here)
have integrated more with the world economy over the past two decades;
their average increase in trade to output ratio is about 13 percentage points
greater than that of the group of developing countries with more modest
improvement in HDI value. this is consistent with earlier findings that coun-
tries tend to open more as they develop.3

the increasingly integrated countries with major improvement in
HDI value include not only the large ones that dominate the headlines,
but also dozens of smaller and least developed countries. thus they
constitute a larger and more varied group than the emerging market

economies often designated by acronyms, such as BRICS (Brazil, Russian
Federation, India, China and South africa), IBSa (India, Brazil and South
africa), CIvetS (Colombia, Indonesia, viet nam, egypt, turkey and South
africa) and mISt (mexico, Indonesia, South Korea [Republic of Korea]
and turkey).

the figure below plots improvement in HDI value4 against the
change in trade to output ratio, an indicator of the depth of participation
in global markets. more than four-fifths of these developing countries
increased their trade to output ratio between 1990 and 2012. among the
exceptions in the subgroup that also made substantial improvement in
HDI value are Indonesia, pakistan and venezuela, three large countries
that are considered global players in world markets, exporting or im-
porting from at least 80 economies. two smaller countries whose trade
to output ratio declined (mauritius and panama) continue to trade at
levels much higher than would be expected for countries at comparable
income levels. all countries that had substantial improvement in HDI
value and increased their trade to output ratio between 1990 and 2012
are highlighted in the upper right quadrant of the figure. Countries in the
lower right quadrant (including Kenya, the philippines and South africa)
increased their trade to output ratio but made modest improvement in
HDI value.

Human progress and trade expansion in the South

Relative improvement in HDI value, 1990–2012

Change in trade to output ratio, 1990–2010

0.6 0.4 0.2 0.0 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1.0 1.2
















Modest HDI improvers, globally integrated

High HDI improvers, globally integrated

1. Bilateral trade exceeding $2 million in 2010–2011.
2. Based on results from a cross-country regression of trade to GDp ratio on income per capita that controls for population and landlockedness.
3. See Rodrik (2001).
4. Relative HDI improvement is measured by residuals from a regression of the change in the log of HDI value between 1990 and 2012 on the log of initial HDI value in 1990. Five countries with black dots in the upper
left quadrant made substantial improvement in HDI value but reduced their trade to output ratio between 1990 and 2010, though they either maintained a large number of substantial trading ties globally or traded
more than predicted for countries at comparable levels of income per capita. Countries with open circles in the upper right and lower right quadrants had modest relative improvement in HDI value between 1990 and
2012 but increased their trade to output ratio or maintained a large number of substantial trading ties.
Source: HDRo calculations; trade to output ratios from World Bank (2012a).

6 | Human Development RepoRt 2013

services—is not an appendage of the growth
process but an integral part of it (figures 7
and 8). Rapid expansion of quality jobs is a
critical feature of growth that promotes human

Driver 2: tapping of global markets

Global markets have played an important role
in advancing progress. All newly industrializing
countries have pursued a strategy of “importing
what the rest of the world knows and exporting
what it wants”. But even more important is
the terms of engagement with these markets.
Without investment in people, returns from
global markets are likely to be limited. Success
is more likely to be the result not of a sudden
opening but of gradual and sequenced inte-
gration with the world economy, according to
national circumstances, and accompanied by
investment in people, institutions and infra-
structure. Smaller economies have successfully
focused on niche products, the choice of which
is often the result of years of state support built
on existing competencies or the creation of
new ones.

Driver 3: determined social
policy innovation

Few countries have sustained rapid growth
without impressive levels of public invest-
ment—not just in infrastructure, but also in
health and education. The aim should be to
create virtuous cycles in which growth and
social policies reinforce each other. Growth
has frequently been much more effective at
reducing poverty in countries with low income
inequality than in countries with high income
inequality. Promoting equality, particularly
among different religious, ethnic or racial
groups, also helps reduce social conflict.

Education, health care, social protections,
legal empowerment and social organization all
enable poor people to participate in growth.
Sectoral balance—especially paying attention
to the rural sector—and the nature and pace
of employment expansion are critical in de-
termining how far growth spreads incomes.
But even these basic policy instruments may
not empower disenfranchised groups. Poor
people on the fringes of society struggle to

FIGuRe 5

As a share of world merchandise trade, South–South trade more than tripled over
1980–2011, while North–North trade declined

Share of world merchandise trade (%)











Note: north in 1980 refers to australia, Canada, Japan, new Zealand, the united States and Western europe.
Source: HDRo calculations based on unSD (2012).

FIGuRe 6

Some countries have performed well on both the nonincome and the income
dimensions of the HDI

0.04 0.02 0 0.02 0.04 0.06 0.08 0.10









Deviation from expected performance of nonincome dimensions of the HDI, 1990–2012

Growth in GNI per capita, 1990–2012 (%)

Brazil Turkey




Viet Nam






Korea, Rep.Mexico

OthersHigh achievers in human development

Note: Based on a balanced panel of 96 countries.
Source: HDRo calculations.

SummaRy | 7

voice their concerns, and governments do not
always evaluate whether services intended to
reach everyone actually do. Social policy has to
promote inclusion—ensuring nondiscrimina-
tion and equal treatment is critical for political
and social stability—and provide basic social
services, which can underpin long-term eco-
nomic growth by supporting the emergence of
a healthy, educated labour force. Not all such
services need be provided publically. But the
state should ensure that all citizens have secure
access to the basic requirements of human de-
velopment (box 3).

An agenda for development transformation
that promotes human development is thus
multifaceted. It expands people’s assets by uni-
versalizing access to basic services. It improves
the functioning of state and social institutions
to promote equitable growth where the ben-
efits are widespread. It reduces bureaucratic
and social constraints on economic action
and social mobility. And it holds leadership

Sustaining momentum

Many countries of the South have demonstrat-
ed much success. But even in higher achieving
countries, future success is not guaranteed. How
can countries in the South continue their pace
of progress in human development, and how
can the progress be extended to other countries?
The Report suggests four important areas to
facilitate this: enhancing equity, enabling voice
and participation, confronting environmental
pressures and managing demographic change.
The Report points to the high cost of policy
inaction and argues for greater policy ambition.

enhancing equity

Greater equity, including between men and
women and across groups, is not only valuable
in itself, but also essential for promoting hu-
man development. One of the most powerful
instruments for this purpose is education,
which boosts people’s self-confidence and
makes it easier for them to find better jobs,
engage in public debate and make demands on
government for health care, social security and
other entitlements.

FIGuRe 7

Current HDI values and previous public expenditures are positively correlated . . .

HDI, 2012

Log of public expenditure on health and education per capita, 2000
6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14










Source: HDRo calculations and World Bank (2012a).

FIGuRe 8

. . . as are current child survival and previous public expenditure on health

2 4 6 8 10 12 14








Log of public expenditure on health per capita, 2000

Log of under-five mortality rate, 2010–2011

Source: HDRo calculations based on World Bank (2012a).

8 | Human Development RepoRt 2013

the Report makes
a strong case for
policy ambition

Education also has striking benefits for health
and mortality (box 4). Research for the report
find that mother’s education is more important
to child survival than household income or
wealth is and that policy interventions have a
greater impact where education outcomes are
initially weaker. This has profound policy im-
plications, potentially shifting emphasis from
efforts to boost household income to measures
to improve girls’ education.

The Report makes a strong case for policy
ambition. An accelerated progress scenario
suggests that low HDI countries can converge
towards the levels of human development
achieved by high and very high HDI coun-
tries. By 2050, aggregate HDI could rise 52%
in Sub-Saharan Africa (from 0.402 to 0.612)
and 36% in South Asia (from 0.527 to 0.714).
Policy interventions under this scenario will
also have a positive impact on the fight against
poverty. By contrast, the costs of inaction will
be increasingly higher, especially in low HDI
countries, which are more vulnerable. For

instance, failing to implement ambitious uni-
versal education policies will adversely affect
many essential pillars of human development
for future generations.

enabling voice and participation

Unless people can participate meaningfully
in the events and processes that shape their
lives, national human development paths will
be neither desirable nor sustainable. People
should be able to influence policymaking and
results, and young people in particular should
be able to look forward to greater economic
opportunities and political participation and

Dissatisfaction is on the rise in the North
and the South as people call for more oppor-
tunities to voice their concerns and influence
policy, especially on basic social protection.
Among the most active protesters are youth,
in part a response to job shortages and limit-
ed employment opportunities for educated

Box 3 Michael Bloomberg, Mayor, New York City

Why New York City looked South for antipoverty policy advice

In new york City, we are working to better the lives of our residents in many
ways. We continue to improve the quality of education in our schools. We
have improved new yorkers’ health by reducing smoking and obesity. and
we have enhanced the city’s landscape by adding bike lanes and planting
hundreds of thousands of trees.

We have also sought to reduce poverty by finding new and better ways
to build self-sufficiency and prepare our young people for bright futures. to
lead this effort, we established the Center for economic opportunity. Its
mission is to identify strategies to help break the cycle of poverty through
innovative education, health and employment initiatives.

over the last six years, the centre has launched more than 50 pilot
programmes in partnership with city agencies and hundreds of community-
based organizations. It has developed a customized evaluation strategy for
each of these pilots, monitoring their performance, comparing outcomes and
determining which strategies are most successful at reducing poverty and
expanding opportunity. Successful programmes are sustained with new pub-
lic and private funds. unsuccessful programmes are discontinued, and re-
sources reinvested in new strategies. the centre’s findings are then shared
across government agencies, with policymakers, with nonprofit partners and
private donors, and with colleagues across the country and around the world
who are also seeking new ways to break the cycle of poverty.

new york is fortunate to have some of the world’s brightest minds work-
ing in our businesses and universities, but we recognize there is much to learn
from programmes developed elsewhere. that is why the centre began its work
by conducting an international survey of promising antipoverty strategies.

In 2007, the centre launched opportunity nyC: Family Rewards, the first
conditional cash transfer programme in the united States. Based on similar
programmes operating in more than 20 other countries, Family Rewards re-
duces poverty by providing households with incentives for preventive health
care, education and job training. In designing Family Rewards, we drew on
lessons from Brazil, mexico and dozens of other countries. By the end of
our three-year pilot, we had learned which programme elements worked in
new york City and which did not; information that is now helpful to a new
generation of programmes worldwide.

Before we launched opportunity nyC: Family Rewards, I visited toluca,
mexico, for a firsthand look at mexico’s successful federal conditional cash
transfer programme, oportunidades. We also participated in a north–
South learning exchange hosted by the united nations. We worked with
the Rockefeller Foundation, the World Bank, the organization of american
States and other institutions and international policymakers to exchange ex-
periences on conditional cash transfer programmes in latin america, as well
as in Indonesia, South africa and turkey.

our international learning exchanges are not limited to these cash
transfer initiatives; they also include innovative approaches to urban trans-
portation, new education initiatives and other programmes.

no one has a monopoly on good ideas, which is why new york will
continue to learn from the best practices of other cities and countries. and
as we adapt and evaluate new programmes in our own city, we remain com-
mitted to returning the favour and making a lasting difference in communi-
ties around the world.

SummaRy | 9

young people. History is replete with popular
rebellions against unresponsive governments.
This can derail human development as unrest
impedes investment and growth and autocratic
governments divert resources to maintaining
law and order.

It is hard to predict when societies will reach
a tipping point. Mass protests, especially by
educated people, tend to erupt when bleak
prospects for economic opportunities lower
the opportunity cost of engaging in political
activity. These “effort-intensive forms of polit-
ical participation” are then easily coordinated
through new forms of mass communication.

Confronting environmental challenges

While environmental threats such as climate
change, deforestation, air and water pollution,

and natural disasters affect everyone, they hurt
poor countries and poor communities most.
Climate change is already exacerbating chronic
environmental threats, and ecosystem losses are
constraining livelihood opportunities, especial-
ly for poor people.

Although low HDI countries contribute the
least to global climate change, they are likely to
experience the greatest loss in annual rainfall
and the sharpest increases in its variability, with
dire implications for agricultural production
and livelihoods. The magnitude of such losses
highlights the urgency of adopting coping
measures to increase people’s resilience to cli-
mate change.

The cost of inaction will likely be high. The
longer action is delayed, the higher the cost
will be. To ensure sustainable economies and
societies, new policies and structural changes

FIGuRe 9













GDP per capita (2000 PPP $ thousands)









Base scenario:
very high HDI countries

Accelerated progress scenario:
very high HDI countries

Accelerated progress scenario:
low, medium and high HDI countries

Base scenario:
low, medium and high HDI countries

In terms of human development, the cost of inaction is higher for countries with lower HDI values. In terms of GDp per capita loss, the cost of inaction is
proportionally the same for countries irrespective of their HDI value.

Source: HDRo calculations based on pardee Center for International Futures (2013).

10 | Human Development RepoRt 2013

are needed that align human development and
climate change goals in low-emission, climate-
resilient strategies and innovative public-
private financing mechanisms.

Managing demographic change

Between 1970 and 2011, world population
swelled from 3.6 billion to 7 billion. As that
population becomes more educated, its growth
rate will decrease. Development prospects are
influenced by the age structure of the popula-
tion, as well as its size. An increasingly critical
concern is the dependency ratio—that is, the
number of younger and older people divided
by the working-age population ages 15–64.

Some poorer countries will benefit from a
“demographic dividend” as the share of the
population in the workforce rises, but only if
there is strong policy action. Girls’ education,
for instance, is a critical vehicle of a possible de-
mographic dividend. Educated women tend to
have fewer, healthier and better educated chil-
dren; in many countries educated women also
enjoy higher salaries than uneducated workers.

The richer regions of the South, by contrast,
will confront a very different problem, as their
population age, reducing the share of the work-
ing-age population. The rate of population
ageing matters because developing countries
will struggle to meet the needs of an older pop-
ulation if they are still poor. Many developing

Box 4

Why population prospects will likely differ in the Republic of Korea and India

educational attainment has risen rapidly in the Republic of Korea. In the
1950s a large proportion of school-age children received no formal educa-
tion. today, young Korean women are among the best educated women in
the world: more than half have completed college. as a consequence, elder-
ly Koreans of the future will be much better educated than elderly Koreans
of today (see figure), and because of the positive correlation between educa-
tion and health, they are also likely to be healthier.

assuming that enrolment rates (which are high) remain constant, the
proportion of the population younger than age 14 will drop from 16% in 2010
to 13% in 2050. there will also be a marked shift in the population’s educa-
tion composition, with the proportion having a tertiary education projected
to rise from 26% to 47%.

For India, the picture looks very different. Before 2000, more than half the
adult population had no formal education. Despite the recent expansion in ba-
sic schooling and impressive growth in the number of better educated Indians
(undoubtedly a key factor in India’s recent economic growth), the proportion
of the adult population with no education will decline only slowly. partly be-
cause of this lower level of education, particularly among women, India’s
population is projected to grow rapidly, with India surpassing China as the
most populous country. even under an optimistic fast track scenario, which
assumes education expansion similar to Korea’s, India’s education distribu-
tion in 2050 will still be highly unequal, with a sizeable group of uneducated
(mostly elderly) adults. the rapid expansion in tertiary education under this
scenario, however, will build a very well educated young adult labour force.

Comparative population and education futures in the Republic of Korea and India
















2040 20502020 203020102000199019801970




2040 20502020 203020102000199019801970





Population (millions) Population (millions)

Republic of Korea, constant enrolment ratios India, fast track scenario

Source: lutz and KC 2013.

SummaRy | 11

Some intergovernmental
processes would
be invigorated by

greater participation
from the South

countries now have only a short window of
opportunity to reap the full benefits of the de-
mographic dividend.

Demographic trends are not deterministic,
however. They can be altered, at least indirect-
ly, by education policies. The Report presents
two scenarios for 2010–2050: the base case
scenario, in which enrolment ratios remain
constant at each level of education, and a fast
track scenario, in which the countries with
the lowest initial education levels embrace
ambitious education targets. The decline in the
dependency ratio for low HDI countries under
the fast track scenario is more than twice that
under the base case scenario. Ambitious edu-
cation policies can enable medium and high
HDI countries to curb projected increases in
their dependency ratios, in order to make their
demographic transition towards an ageing pop-
ulation less difficult.

Addressing these demographic challenges
will require raising educational attainment
levels while expanding productive employment
opportunities—by reducing unemployment,
promoting labour productivity and increasing
labour force participation, particularly among
women and older workers.

Governance and partnerships
for a new era

The new arrangements promoted by the South
and the resulting pluralism are challenging
existing institutions and processes in the tra-
ditional domains of multilateralism—finance,
trade, investment and health—sometimes di-
rectly and sometimes indirectly through alter-
native regional and subregional systems. Global
and regional governance is becoming a multi-
faceted combination of new arrangements and
old structures that need collective nurturing in
multiple ways. Reforms in global institutions
must be complemented by stronger coopera-
tion with regional institutions—and in some
cases broader mandates for those regional in-
stitutions. The accountability of organizations
must be extended to a wider group of countries,
as well as to a wider group of stakeholders.

Many of the current institutions and prin-
ciples for international governance were de-
signed for a world order that does not match

contemporary reality. One consequence is
that these institutions greatly underrepresent
the South. If they are to survive, international
institutions need to be more representative,
transparent and accountable. Indeed, some
intergovernmental processes would be invig-
orated by greater participation from the South,
which can bring substantial financial, techno-
logical and human resources.

In all of this, governments are understand-
ably concerned with preserving national
sovereignty. Overly strict adherence to the
primacy of national sovereignty can encourage
zero-sum thinking. A better strategy is respon-
sible sovereignty, whereby countries engage in
fair, rule-based and accountable international
cooperation, joining in collective endeavours
that enhance global welfare. Responsible sov-
ereignty also requires that states ensure the hu-
man rights security and safety of their citizens.
According to this view, sovereignty is seen not
just as a right but as a responsibility.

This changing world has profound implica-
tions for the provision of public goods. Areas
of global international concern meriting ur-
gent attention and cooperation include trade,
migration and climate change. In some cases,
public goods can be delivered by regional
institutions, which can avoid the polarization
that slows progress in larger, multilateral fo-
rums. Increasing regional cooperation may,
however, have disadvantages—adding to a
complex, multi level and fragmented tapestry
of institutions. The challenge therefore is to
ensure “coherent pluralism”—so that institu-
tions at all levels work in a broadly coordinat-
ed fashion.

International governance institutions can be
held to account not just by member states, but
also by global civil society. Civil society organ-
izations have already influenced global trans-
parency and rule setting on aid, debt, human
rights, health and climate change. Civil society
networks can now take advantage of new me-
dia and new communications technologies. Yet
civil society organizations also face questions
about their legitimacy and accountability and
may take undesirable forms. Nevertheless, the
future legitimacy of international governance
will depend on the capabilities of institu-
tions to engage with citizen networks and

12 | Human Development RepoRt 2013

the unprecedented
accumulation of financial
reserves provides an
opportunity to accelerate
broad-based progress

Conclusions: partners
in a new era

Many countries of the South have already
demonstrated what can be done to ensure
that human development proceeds in ways
that are both productive and sustainable, but
they have gone only part of the way. For the
years ahead, the Report suggests five broad

Rising economic strength in the
South must be matched by a full
commitment to human development

Investments in human development are jus-
tified not only on moral grounds, but also
because improvements in health, education
and social welfare are key to success in a more
competitive and dynamic world economy. In
particular, these investments should target the
poor—connecting them to markets and in-
creasing their livelihood opportunities. Poverty
is an injustice that can and should be remedied
by determined action.

Good policymaking also requires greater
focus on enhancing social capacities, not just
individual capabilities. Individuals function
within social institutions that can limit or
enhance their development potential. Policies
that change social norms that limit human po-
tential, such as strictures against early marriages
or dowry requirements, can open up additional
opportunities for individuals to reach their full

less developed countries can learn
and benefit from the success of
emerging economies in the South

The unprecedented accumulation of financial
reserves and sovereign wealth funds in the
South as well as the North provides an op-
portunity to accelerate broad-based progress.
Even a small portion of these funds dedicated
to human development and poverty eradi-
cation could have a large effect. At the same
time South–South trade and investment flows
can leverage foreign markets in new ways that
enhance development opportunities, such as
by participating in regional and global value

Burgeoning South–South trade and invest-
ment in particular can lay the basis for shifting
manufacturing capacity to other less developed
regions and countries. Recent Chinese and
Indian joint ventures and startup manufac-
turing investments in Africa serve as a prelude
to a much expanded force. International pro-
duction networks provide opportunities to
speed up the development process by allowing
countries to leap-frog to more sophisticated
production modes.

New institutions and new partnerships
can facilitate regional integration
and South–South relationships

New institutions and partnerships can help
countries share knowledge, experiences and
technology. This can be accompanied by new
and stronger institutions to promote trade and
investment and accelerate experience sharing
across the South. One step would be to estab-
lish a new South Commission to bring a fresh
vision of how the diversity of the South can be
a force for solidarity.

Greater representation for the South
and civil society can accelerate
progress on major global challenges

The rise of the South is leading to a greater
diversity of voice on the world stage. This
represents an opportunity to build governance
institutions that fully represent all constituen-
cies that would make productive use of this di-
versity in finding solutions to world problems.

New guiding principles for international or-
ganizations are needed which incorporate the
experience of the South. The emergence of the
Group of 20 is an important step in this direc-
tion, but the countries of the South also need
more equitable representation in the Bretton
Woods institutions, the United Nations and
other international bodies.

Active civil society and social movements,
both national and transnational, are using
the media to amplify their calls for just and
fair governance. The spread of movements
and increasing platforms for vocalizing key
messages and demands challenge governance
institutions to adapt more-democratic and
more-inclusive principles. More generally, a

SummaRy | 13

the rise of the
South presents new

opportunities for providing
global public goods

more effectively and for
unlocking today’s many

stalemated global issues

fairer and less unequal world requires space
for a multiplicity of voices and a system of
public discourse.

the rise of the South presents
new opportunities for generating
a greater supply of public goods

A sustainable world requires a greater supply
of global public goods. Global issues today
are increasing in number and urgency, from
mitigation of climate change and international
economic and financial instability to the fight
against terrorism and nuclear proliferation.
They require a global response. Yet in many ar-
eas, international cooperation continues to be
slow—and at times dangerously hesitant. The
rise of the South presents new opportunities
for providing global public goods more effec-
tively and for unlocking today’s many stalemat-
ed global issues.

“Publicness” and “privateness” are in most
cases not innate properties of a public good
but social constructs. As such, they represent a
policy choice. National governments can step
in when there is underprovision at the national
level, but when global challenges arise, interna-
tional cooperation is necessary and can happen
only by voluntary action of many governments.
Given the many pressing challenges, progress in
determining what is public and what is private

will require strong, committed personal and
institutional leadership.

* * *

The 2013 Human Development Report presents
the contemporary global context and charts a
path for policymakers and citizens to navigate
the increasing interconnectedness of the world
and to face the growing global challenges. It de-
scribes how the dynamics of power, voice and
wealth in the world are changing—and identi-
fies the new policies and institutions necessary
to address these 21st century realities and pro-
mote human development with greater equity,
sustainability and social integration. Progress
in human development requires action and in-
stitutions at both the global and national levels.
At the global level, institutional reforms and
innovation are required to protect and provide
global public goods. At the national level, state
commitment to social justice is important, as
is the reality that one-size-fits-all technocratic
policies are neither realistic nor effective given
the diversity of national contexts, cultures and
institutional conditions. Nevertheless, overar-
ching principles such as social cohesion, state
commitment to education, health and social
protection, and openness to trade integration
emerge as means of navigating towards sustain-
able and equitable human development.

14 | Human Development RepoRt 2013

afghanistan 175

albania 70 –1

algeria 93 –1

andorra 33 –1

angola 148

antigua and Barbuda 67 –1

argentina 45 –1

armenia 87 –1

australia 2

austria 18

azerbaijan 82 –1

Bahamas 49

Bahrain 48

Bangladesh 146 1 →
Barbados 38

Belarus 50 1 →

Belgium 17

Belize 96

Benin 166

Bhutan 140 1 →

Bolivia, plurinational State of 108

Bosnia and Herzegovina 81 –1

Botswana 119 –1

Brazil 85

Brunei Darussalam 30

Bulgaria 57

Burkina Faso 183

Burundi 178 –1

Cambodia 138

Cameroon 150

Canada 11 –1

Cape verde 132 –1

Central african Republic 180 –1

Chad 184

Chile 40

China 101

Colombia 91

Comoros 169 –1

Congo 142

Congo, Democratic Republic of the 186

Costa Rica 62

Côte d'Ivoire 168 1 →

Croatia 47 –1

Cuba 59

Cyprus 31

Czech Republic 28

Denmark 15

Djibouti 164

Dominica 72

Dominican Republic 96 2 →

ecuador 89

egypt 112

el Salvador 107 –1

equatorial Guinea 136

eritrea 181 1 →

estonia 33 1 →

ethiopia 173 –1

Fiji 96 2 →

Finland 21

France 20

Gabon 106

Gambia 165

Georgia 72 3 →

Germany 5

Ghana 135

Greece 29

Grenada 63 –1

Guatemala 133

Guinea 178 –1

Guinea-Bissau 176

Guyana 118 1 →

Haiti 161 1 →

Honduras 120

Hong Kong, China (SaR) 13 1 →

Hungary 37

Iceland 13

India 136

Indonesia 121 3 →

Iran, Islamic Republic of 76 –2

Iraq 131 1 →

Ireland 7

Israel 16

Italy 25

Jamaica 85 –2

Japan 10

Jordan 100

Kazakhstan 69 –1

Kenya 145

Kiribati 121

Korea, Republic of 12

Kuwait 54 –1

Kyrgyzstan 125

lao people's Democratic Republic 138

latvia 44 1 →

lebanon 72

lesotho 158 1 →

liberia 174

libya 64 23 →

liechtenstein 24

lithuania 41 2 →

luxembourg 26

madagascar 151

malawi 170 1 →

malaysia 64 1 →

maldives 104 –1

mali 182 –1

malta 32 1 →

mauritania 155

mauritius 80 –1

mexico 61

micronesia, Federated States of 117

moldova, Republic of 113

mongolia 108 2 →

montenegro 52 –2

morocco 130

mozambique 185

myanmar 149

namibia 128

nepal 157

netherlands 4

new Zealand 6

nicaragua 129

niger 186 1 →

nigeria 153 1 →

norway 1

oman 84 –1

pakistan 146

palau 52 2 →

palestine, State of 110 1 →

panama 59 1 →

papua new Guinea 156

paraguay 111 –2

peru 77 –1

philippines 114

poland 39

portugal 43 –3

Qatar 36

Romania 56 –1

Russian Federation 55

Rwanda 167

Saint Kitts and nevis 72 –1

Saint lucia 88

Saint vincent and the Grenadines 83 –2

Samoa 96

Sao tome and principe 144

Saudi arabia 57

Senegal 154 –2

Serbia 64

Seychelles 46

Sierra leone 177 2 →

Singapore 18

Slovakia 35

Slovenia 21

Solomon Islands 143

South africa 121 1 →

Spain 23

Sri lanka 92

Sudan 171 –1

Suriname 105

Swaziland 141 –1

Sweden 7

Switzerland 9

Syrian arab Republic 116

tajikistan 125 1 →

tanzania, united Republic of 152 1 →

thailand 103 1 →

the former yugoslav Republic of macedonia 78 –2

timor-leste 134

togo 159 1 →

tonga 95

trinidad and tobago 67 –1

tunisia 94

turkey 90

turkmenistan 102

uganda 161

ukraine 78

united arab emirates 41 –1

united Kingdom 26

united States 3 –1

uruguay 51

uzbekistan 114 1 →

vanuatu 124 –2

venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of 71 –1

viet nam 127

yemen 160 –2

Zambia 163

Zimbabwe 172 1 →

2012 HDI ranks and changes in rank from 2011 to 2012

Note: Positive or negative values and arrows indicate the number of positions upward or downward a country’s rank changed from 2011 to 2012 using consistent data and methodology; a blank
indicates no change.

SummaRy | 15

Human development indices

HDI rank

Human Development


Gender Inequality

Multidimensional Poverty

value value Rank value Rank value year

1 norway 0.955 0.894 1 0.065 5 ..
2 australia 0.938 0.864 2 0.115 17 ..
3 united States 0.937 0.821 16 0.256 42 ..
4 netherlands 0.921 0.857 4 0.045 1 ..
5 Germany 0.920 0.856 5 0.075 6 ..
6 new Zealand 0.919 .. .. 0.164 31 ..
7 Ireland 0.916 0.850 6 0.121 19 ..
7 Sweden 0.916 0.859 3 0.055 2 ..
9 Switzerland 0.913 0.849 7 0.057 3 ..

10 Japan 0.912 .. .. 0.131 21 ..
11 Canada 0.911 0.832 13 0.119 18 ..
12 Korea, Republic of 0.909 0.758 28 0.153 27 ..
13 Hong Kong, China (SaR) 0.906 .. .. .. .. ..
13 Iceland 0.906 0.848 8 0.089 10 ..
15 Denmark 0.901 0.845 9 0.057 3 ..
16 Israel 0.900 0.790 21 0.144 25 ..
17 Belgium 0.897 0.825 15 0.098 12 ..
18 austria 0.895 0.837 12 0.102 14 ..
18 Singapore 0.895 .. .. 0.101 13 ..
20 France 0.893 0.812 18 0.083 9 ..
21 Finland 0.892 0.839 11 0.075 6 ..
21 Slovenia 0.892 0.840 10 0.080 8 0.000 2003
23 Spain 0.885 0.796 20 0.103 15 ..
24 liechtenstein 0.883 .. .. .. .. ..
25 Italy 0.881 0.776 24 0.094 11 ..
26 luxembourg 0.875 0.813 17 0.149 26 ..
26 united Kingdom 0.875 0.802 19 0.205 34 ..
28 Czech Republic 0.873 0.826 14 0.122 20 0.010 2002/2003
29 Greece 0.860 0.760 27 0.136 23 ..
30 Brunei Darussalam 0.855 .. .. .. .. ..
31 Cyprus 0.848 0.751 29 0.134 22 ..
32 malta 0.847 0.778 23 0.236 39 ..
33 andorra 0.846 .. .. .. .. ..
33 estonia 0.846 0.770 25 0.158 29 0.026 2003
35 Slovakia 0.840 0.788 22 0.171 32 0.000 2003
36 Qatar 0.834 .. .. 0.546 117 ..
37 Hungary 0.831 0.769 26 0.256 42 0.016 2003
38 Barbados 0.825 .. .. 0.343 61 ..
39 poland 0.821 0.740 30 0.140 24 ..
40 Chile 0.819 0.664 41 0.360 66 ..
41 lithuania 0.818 0.727 33 0.157 28 ..
41 united arab emirates 0.818 .. .. 0.241 40 0.002 2003
43 portugal 0.816 0.729 32 0.114 16 ..
44 latvia 0.814 0.726 35 0.216 36 0.006 2003
45 argentina 0.811 0.653 43 0.380 71 0.011 2005
46 Seychelles 0.806 .. .. .. .. ..
47 Croatia 0.805 0.683 39 0.179 33 0.016 2003

48 Bahrain 0.796 .. .. 0.258 45 ..
49 Bahamas 0.794 .. .. 0.316 53 ..
50 Belarus 0.793 0.727 33 .. .. 0.000 2005
51 uruguay 0.792 0.662 42 0.367 69 0.006 2002/2003
52 montenegro 0.791 0.733 31 .. .. 0.006 2005/2006
52 palau 0.791 .. .. .. .. ..
54 Kuwait 0.790 .. .. 0.274 47 ..
55 Russian Federation 0.788 .. .. 0.312 51 0.005 2003
56 Romania 0.786 0.687 38 0.327 55 ..
57 Bulgaria 0.782 0.704 36 0.219 38 ..
57 Saudi arabia 0.782 .. .. 0.682 145 ..
59 Cuba 0.780 .. .. 0.356 63 ..
59 panama 0.780 0.588 57 0.503 108 ..
61 mexico 0.775 0.593 55 0.382 72 0.015 2006

16 | Human Development RepoRt 2013

HDI rank

Human Development


Gender Inequality

Multidimensional Poverty

value value Rank value Rank value year

62 Costa Rica 0.773 0.606 54 0.346 62 ..
63 Grenada 0.770 .. .. .. .. ..
64 libya 0.769 .. .. 0.216 36 ..
64 malaysia 0.769 .. .. 0.256 42 ..
64 Serbia 0.769 0.696 37 .. .. 0.003 2005/2006
67 antigua and Barbuda 0.760 .. .. .. .. ..
67 trinidad and tobago 0.760 0.644 49 0.311 50 0.020 2006
69 Kazakhstan 0.754 0.652 44 0.312 51 0.002 2006
70 albania 0.749 0.645 48 0.251 41 0.005 2008/2009
71 venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of 0.748 0.549 66 0.466 93 ..
72 Dominica 0.745 .. .. .. .. ..
72 Georgia 0.745 0.631 51 0.438 81 0.003 2005
72 lebanon 0.745 0.575 59 0.433 78 ..
72 Saint Kitts and nevis 0.745 .. .. .. .. ..
76 Iran, Islamic Republic of 0.742 .. .. 0.496 107 ..
77 peru 0.741 0.561 62 0.387 73 0.066 2008
78 the former yugoslav Republic of macedonia 0.740 0.631 51 0.162 30 0.008 2005
78 ukraine 0.740 0.672 40 0.338 57 0.008 2007
80 mauritius 0.737 0.639 50 0.377 70 ..
81 Bosnia and Herzegovina 0.735 0.650 45 .. .. 0.003 2006
82 azerbaijan 0.734 0.650 45 0.323 54 0.021 2006
83 Saint vincent and the Grenadines 0.733 .. .. .. .. ..
84 oman 0.731 .. .. 0.340 59 ..
85 Brazil 0.730 0.531 70 0.447 85 0.011 2006
85 Jamaica 0.730 0.591 56 0.458 87 ..
87 armenia 0.729 0.649 47 0.340 59 0.001 2010
88 Saint lucia 0.725 .. .. .. .. ..
89 ecuador 0.724 0.537 69 0.442 83 0.009 2003
90 turkey 0.722 0.560 63 0.366 68 0.028 2003
91 Colombia 0.719 0.519 74 0.459 88 0.022 2010
92 Sri lanka 0.715 0.607 53 0.402 75 0.021 2003
93 algeria 0.713 .. .. 0.391 74 ..
94 tunisia 0.712 .. .. 0.261 46 0.010 2003

95 tonga 0.710 .. .. 0.462 90 ..
96 Belize 0.702 .. .. 0.435 79 0.024 2006
96 Dominican Republic 0.702 0.510 80 0.508 109 0.018 2007
96 Fiji 0.702 .. .. .. .. ..
96 Samoa 0.702 .. .. .. .. ..

100 Jordan 0.700 0.568 60 0.482 99 0.008 2009
101 China 0.699 0.543 67 0.213 35 0.056 2002
102 turkmenistan 0.698 .. .. .. .. ..
103 thailand 0.690 0.543 67 0.360 66 0.006 2005/2006
104 maldives 0.688 0.515 76 0.357 64 0.018 2009
105 Suriname 0.684 0.526 72 0.467 94 0.039 2006
106 Gabon 0.683 0.550 65 0.492 105 ..
107 el Salvador 0.680 0.499 83 0.441 82 ..
108 Bolivia, plurinational State of 0.675 0.444 85 0.474 97 0.089 2008
108 mongolia 0.675 0.568 60 0.328 56 0.065 2005
110 palestine, State of 0.670 .. .. .. .. 0.005 2006/2007
111 paraguay 0.669 .. .. 0.472 95 0.064 2002/2003
112 egypt 0.662 0.503 82 0.590 126 0.024 2008
113 moldova, Republic of 0.660 0.584 58 0.303 49 0.007 2005
114 philippines 0.654 0.524 73 0.418 77 0.064 2008
114 uzbekistan 0.654 0.551 64 .. .. 0.008 2006
116 Syrian arab Republic 0.648 0.515 76 0.551 118 0.021 2006
117 micronesia, Federated States of 0.645 .. .. .. .. ..
118 Guyana 0.636 0.514 78 0.490 104 0.030 2009
119 Botswana 0.634 .. .. 0.485 102 ..
120 Honduras 0.632 0.458 84 0.483 100 0.159 2005/2006
121 Indonesia 0.629 0.514 78 0.494 106 0.095 2007
121 Kiribati 0.629 .. .. .. .. ..
121 South africa 0.629 .. .. 0.462 90 0.057 2008

Human Development InDICeS | 17

HDI rank

Human Development


Gender Inequality

Multidimensional Poverty

value value Rank value Rank value year

124 vanuatu 0.626 .. .. .. .. 0.129 2007
125 Kyrgyzstan 0.622 0.516 75 0.357 64 0.019 2005/2006
125 tajikistan 0.622 0.507 81 0.338 57 0.068 2005
127 viet nam 0.617 0.531 70 0.299 48 0.017 2010/2011
128 namibia 0.608 0.344 101 0.455 86 0.187 2006/2007
129 nicaragua 0.599 0.434 86 0.461 89 0.128 2006/2007
130 morocco 0.591 0.415 88 0.444 84 0.048 2007
131 Iraq 0.590 .. .. 0.557 120 0.059 2006
132 Cape verde 0.586 .. .. .. .. ..
133 Guatemala 0.581 0.389 92 0.539 114 0.127 2003
134 timor-leste 0.576 0.386 93 .. .. 0.360 2009/2010
135 Ghana 0.558 0.379 94 0.565 121 0.144 2008
136 equatorial Guinea 0.554 .. .. .. .. ..
136 India 0.554 0.392 91 0.610 132 0.283 2005/2006
138 Cambodia 0.543 0.402 90 0.473 96 0.212 2010
138 lao people’s Democratic Republic 0.543 0.409 89 0.483 100 0.267 2006
140 Bhutan 0.538 0.430 87 0.464 92 0.119 2010
141 Swaziland 0.536 0.346 99 0.525 112 0.086 2010
142 Congo 0.534 0.368 96 0.610 132 0.208 2009
143 Solomon Islands 0.530 .. .. .. .. ..
144 Sao tome and principe 0.525 0.358 97 .. .. 0.154 2008/2009
145 Kenya 0.519 0.344 101 0.608 130 0.229 2008/2009
146 Bangladesh 0.515 0.374 95 0.518 111 0.292 2007
146 pakistan 0.515 0.356 98 0.567 123 0.264 2006/2007
148 angola 0.508 0.285 114 .. .. ..
149 myanmar 0.498 .. .. 0.437 80 ..
150 Cameroon 0.495 0.330 104 0.628 137 0.287 2004
151 madagascar 0.483 0.335 103 .. .. 0.357 2008/2009
152 tanzania, united Republic of 0.476 0.346 99 0.556 119 0.332 2010
153 nigeria 0.471 0.276 119 .. .. 0.310 2008
154 Senegal 0.470 0.315 105 0.540 115 0.439 2010/2011
155 mauritania 0.467 0.306 107 0.643 139 0.352 2007
156 papua new Guinea 0.466 .. .. 0.617 134 ..
157 nepal 0.463 0.304 109 0.485 102 0.217 2011
158 lesotho 0.461 0.296 111 0.534 113 0.156 2009
159 togo 0.459 0.305 108 0.566 122 0.284 2006
160 yemen 0.458 0.310 106 0.747 148 0.283 2006
161 Haiti 0.456 0.273 120 0.592 127 0.299 2005/2006
161 uganda 0.456 0.303 110 0.517 110 0.367 2011
163 Zambia 0.448 0.283 117 0.623 136 0.328 2007
164 Djibouti 0.445 0.285 114 .. .. 0.139 2006
165 Gambia 0.439 .. .. 0.594 128 0.324 2005/2006
166 Benin 0.436 0.280 118 0.618 135 0.412 2006
167 Rwanda 0.434 0.287 112 0.414 76 0.350 2010
168 Côte d’Ivoire 0.432 0.265 122 0.632 138 0.353 2005
169 Comoros 0.429 .. .. .. .. ..
170 malawi 0.418 0.287 112 0.573 124 0.334 2010
171 Sudan 0.414 .. .. 0.604 129 ..
172 Zimbabwe 0.397 0.284 116 0.544 116 0.172 2010/2011
173 ethiopia 0.396 0.269 121 .. .. 0.564 2011
174 liberia 0.388 0.251 123 0.658 143 0.485 2007
175 afghanistan 0.374 .. .. 0.712 147 ..
176 Guinea-Bissau 0.364 0.213 127 .. .. ..
177 Sierra leone 0.359 0.210 128 0.643 139 0.439 2008
178 Burundi 0.355 .. .. 0.476 98 0.530 2005
178 Guinea 0.355 0.217 126 .. .. 0.506 2005
180 Central african Republic 0.352 0.209 129 0.654 142 ..
181 eritrea 0.351 .. .. .. .. ..
182 mali 0.344 .. .. 0.649 141 0.558 2006
183 Burkina Faso 0.343 0.226 124 0.609 131 0.535 2010
184 Chad 0.340 0.203 130 .. .. 0.344 2003
185 mozambique 0.327 0.220 125 0.582 125 0.512 2009
186 Congo, Democratic Republic of the 0.304 0.183 132 0.681 144 0.392 2010
186 niger 0.304 0.200 131 0.707 146 0.642 2006

18 | Human Development RepoRt 2013

HDI rank

Human Development


Gender Inequality

Multidimensional Poverty

value value Rank value Rank value year

Korea, Democratic people’s Rep. of .. .. .. .. .. ..
marshall Islands .. .. .. .. .. ..
monaco .. .. .. .. .. ..
nauru .. .. .. .. .. ..
San marino .. .. .. .. .. ..
Somalia .. .. .. .. .. 0.514 2006
South Sudan .. .. .. .. .. ..
tuvalu .. .. .. .. .. ..

Human Development Index groups
very high human development 0.905 0.807 — 0.193 — —
High human development 0.758 0.602 — 0.376 — —
medium human development 0.640 0.485 — 0.457 — —
low human development 0.466 0.310 — 0.578 — —

arab States 0.652 0.486 — 0.555 — —
east asia and the pacific 0.683 0.537 — 0.333 — —
europe and Central asia 0.771 0.672 — 0.280 — —
latin america and the Caribbean 0.741 0.550 — 0.419 — —
South asia 0.558 0.395 — 0.568 — —
Sub-Saharan africa 0.475 0.309 — 0.577 — —

least developed countries 0.449 0.303 — 0.566 — —
Small island developing states 0.648 0.459 — 0.481 — —
World 0.694 0.532 — 0.463 — —


the indices use data from different years—see the Statistical annex of the full Report (available at http://hdr.undp.org) for details and for complete notes and sources on the data. Country classifications are based on HDI
quartiles: a country is in the very high group if its HDI is in the top quartile, in the high group if its HDI is in percentiles 51–75, in the medium group if its HDI is in percentiles 26–50 and in the low group if its HDI is in the
bottom quartile. previous Reports used absolute rather than relative thresholds.

Human Development InDICeS | 19

Global Human Development Reports: The 2013 Human Development Report is the latest in the series of global Human
Development Reports published by UNDP since 1990 as independent, empirically grounded analyses of major development
issues, trends, and policies.

Additional resources related to the 2013 Human Development Report can be found on line at hdr.undp.org, including complete
editions or summaries of the Report in more than 20 languages; a collection of Human Development Research Papers com-
missioned for the 2013 Report; interactive maps and databases of national human development indicators; full explanations of
the sources and methodologies employed in the Report’s human development indices; country profiles; and other background
materials. Previous global, regional and national Human Development Reports (HDRs) are also available at hdr.undp.org.

Regional Human Development Reports: Over the past two decades, regionally focused HDRs have also been produced in all
major areas of the developing world, with support from UNDP’s regional bureaus. With provocative analyses and clear policy
recommendations, these regional HDRs have examined such critical issues as political empowerment in the Arab states, food
security in Africa, climate change in Asia, the treatment of ethnic minorities in Central Europe, and the challenges of inequality
and citizens’ security in Latin America and the Caribbean.

National Human Development Reports: Since the release of the first National HDR in 1992, National HDRs have been pro-
duced in 140 countries by local editorial teams with UNDP support. These reports—some 700 to date—bring a human develop-
ment perspective to national policy concerns through local consultations and research. National HDRs have covered many key
development issues, from climate change to youth employment to inequalities driven by gender or ethnicity.

Human Development Reports 1990–2013
1990 Concept and Measurement of Human Development
1991 Financing Human Development
1992 Global Dimensions of Human Development
1993 People’s Participation
1994 New Dimensions of Human Security
1995 Gender and Human Development
1996 Economic Growth and Human Development
1997 Human Development to Eradicate Poverty
1998 Consumption for Human Development
1999 Globalization with a Human Face
2000 Human Rights and Human Development
2001 Making New Technologies Work for Human Development
2002 Deepening Democracy in a Fragmented World
2003 Millennium Development Goals: A Compact among Nations to End Human Poverty
2004 Cultural Liberty in Today’s Diverse World
2005 International Cooperation at a Crossroads: Aid, Trade and Security in an Unequal World
2006 Beyond Scarcity: Power, Poverty and the Global Water Crisis
2007/2008 Fighting Climate Change: Human Solidarity in a Divided World
2009 Overcoming Barriers: Human Mobility and Development
2010 The Real Wealth of Nations: Pathways to Human Development
2011 Sustainability and Equity: A Better Future for All
2013 The Rise of the South: Human Progress in a Diverse World

United Nations Development Programme
One United Nations Plaza
New York, NY 10017

Empowered lives.
Resilient nations.

The 21st century is witnessing a profound shift in global
dynamics, driven by the fast-rising new powers of the
developing world. China has overtaken Japan as the
world’s second biggest economy, lifting hundreds of
millions of people out of poverty in the process. India is
reshaping its future with new entrepreneurial creativity
and social policy innovation. Brazil is raising its living
standards by expanding international relationships and
antipoverty programmes that are emulated worldwide.

But the “Rise of the South” is a much larger phe-
nomenon. Indonesia, Mexico, South Africa, Thailand,
Turkey and other developing countries are becoming
leading actors on the world stage. The 2013 Human
Development Report identifies more than 40 developing
countries that have done better than expected in human
development in recent decades, with their progress
accelerating markedly over the past 10 years.

Each of these countries has its own unique history
and has chosen its own distinct development pathway.

Yet they share important characteristics and face
many of the same challenges. They are also becoming
more interconnected and interdependent. And people
throughout the developing world are increasingly
demanding to be heard, as they share ideas through new
communications channels and seek greater accountability
from governments and international institutions.

The 2013 Human Development Report analyses the
causes and consequences of the continuing “Rise of
the South” and identifies policies rooted in this new
reality that could promote greater progress throughout
the world for decades to come. The Report calls for far
better representation of the South in global governance
systems and points to potential new sources of
financing within the South for essential public goods.
With fresh analytical insights and clear proposals for
policy reforms, the Report charts a course for people
in all regions to face shared human development
challenges together, fairly and effectively.

“The Report refreshes our understanding of the current state of global development, and demonstrates how much can be
learned from the experiences of fast development progress in so many countries in the South.”
—UNDP Administrator Helen Clark, from the Foreword

“The human development approach is a major advance in the difficult exercise of understanding the successes and
deprivations of human lives, and in appreciating the importance of reflection and dialogue, and through that advancing
fairness and justice in the world.” —Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen, from chapter 1

“No one has a monopoly on good ideas, which is why New York will continue to learn from the best practices of other cities
and countries.” —New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, from chapter 3

“A close look at the diverse pathways that successful developing countries have pursued enriches the menu of policy
options for all countries and regions.” —Report lead author Khalid Malik, from the Introduction