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Human Development Report 2003

Sakiko Fukuda-Parr
Price: $ 22.95

Every year since 1990, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has commissioned the Human Development Report by an independent team of experts to explore major issues of global concern. The concept of Human Development looks beyond per capita income, human resource development, and basic needs as measure of human progress and also assesses such factors as human freedom, dignity and human agency, that is, the role of people in development.

The Human Development Report 2003 argues that development is ultimately "a process of enlarging people's choices," not just raising national incomes.

The world is facing an acute development crisis, with many poor nations suffering severe and continuing socio-economic reversals, warns the Human Development Report 2003 The Report's annual Human Development Index (HDI), measuring the progress of nations on key social and economic indicators, shows that 21 countries experienced declines in the 1990s. In the 1980s, only four countries tracked by UNDP showed similar decade-long declines.

The Index takes stock of fundamental aspects of human development in countries both rich and poor. The Index is a composite measure of life-expectancy, education and income per-person.

Almost all of the "low human development" countries at the bottom of the Index are in sub-Saharan Africa: 30 out of a total of 34

Roughly half of the countries in Latin America and the Caribbean recorded either a decline or stagnation in income during the 1990s.

Eastern Europe and Central Asia saw an overall decline in the 2003 Human Development Index resulting from falling per capita income. The decline was particularly steep in Moldova, Tajikistan, Russian Federation and the Ukraine.

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