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Human Development and the Millennium Development Goals


Ratios of girls to boys in primary education: 100 per cent in 2000. ... for a review and revision of the Lebanese MDGs with a view to eliminating the ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Human Development and the Millennium Development Goals

Human Development and the Millennium Development
  • MADMABeirut 2006

  • 3 topics to be discussed1- Human Development
    Indicators2- MDGs in Lebanon3- Needs for
    statistics to evaluate the MDGs

Topic 1 Major development indicators, 1960s to
  • 1960s Unitary Index by Drewnovsky of UNRISD
    (nutrition, shelter, health, education, leisure,
    security, and social and physical environment).
  • 1970s Physical Quality of Life Index (PQLI) by
    Morris (infant mortality, life expectancy, adult
  • 1980s International Human Suffering Index by
    Population Crisis Committee (expectation of life,
    calorie intake, availability of clear drinking
    water, secondary enrollment, inflation rates,
    infant immunization, civil rights and political
  • 1990s Human Development Index ( HDI) (per capita
    income adjusted for purchasing power, literacy,
    combined primary and secondary and tertiary
    enrollment, and expectation of life at birth).

From which a plethora of indices
  • Income distribution sensitive HDI
  • Human Freedom Index (HFI)
  • Gender-Disparity adjusted HDI
  • Gender-related Development Index (GDI)
  • Gender Empowerment Measure (GEM)
  • Capability Poverty Measure (CPM)
  • Human Poverty Index (HPI). In addition to other
    privately generated indices such as Freedom Index
    of the Freedom Foundation and many others.

  • Problem 1 Which index should the policy-maker

  • In order to improve all human development
    indicators, the
  • decision maker should
  • Increase life expectancy of people
  • Increase literacy rates
  • Increase enrolment at all educational levels
  • Reduce income disparities among people
  • Improve personal security of all citizens
  • Expand the rule of law
  • Insure freedom of expression
  • Improve political participation of the people
  • Insure equality of opportunity among them
  • Reduce gender disparities in income, longevity
    and education
  • Insure greater participation of women in
    political decisions
  • Insure their access to professional opportunities
    and their earning power
  • Insure that all will have the capability to be
    well nourished, healthy and educated
  • Reduce the proportion of children who are
  • Insure that all deliveries are attended by
    qualified physicians
  • Increase proportion of people who have access to
    safe water and health services
  • Among other things.

  • Problem 2 most variables used in calculating
    these indices are strongly inter-correlated.
  • For example expectation of life at birth and
    infant mortality are very highly inter-correlated
    so using one to rank countries gives very similar
    results from using the other. Both are highly
    inter-correlated with literacy levels
    (negatively) and with per capita income.
  • Therefore, ranking countries by any of the above
    indices gives results that are not very far from
    each other (US, Sweden, etc. are always in the
    top one third, Lebanon, Guatemala etc. are always
    in the middle one third and Sierra Leone and
    Yemen are always in the bottom one third).

  • However, if we introduce variables that are not
    inter-correlated with the existing ones, such as
    the ones reflecting drug abuse, divorce, suicide,
    homicide, etc., a major change in ranking takes

  • Problem 3 All composite indices suffer from the
    problem of relative weights of the variables.
  • In an African country devastated by HIV/AIDS,
    does a 10 per cent improvement in health equal 10
    per cent improvement in say literacy or income?

Topic 2 The MDGs of Lebanon
  • Most targets were realistically set in 2000 (the
    MDG report year), and Lebanon seems on the way to
    achieving themFor example - infant mortality
    rate 27 per thousand in 2000, fell to less than
    19 in 2004. Target 10 per thousand by 2015.

  • However, some targets are not very meaningful.
  • For example -Proportion of births attended by
    skilled health personnel 96 per cent in 1996, 98
    per cent in 2004. Target 98 per cent in 2015.
    -Ratios of girls to boys in primary education
    100 per cent in 2000. Target 100 per cent in
    2015.-Ratio of literate females to males 15-24
    years 97 per cent in 1995.(For 10-14 years
    close to 100 per cent). Target 100 per cent in

  • Most important, some priority sectors are missing
    from present MDGs.
  • For example1. International migration,
    particularly the migration of young persons.
    This is widely considered, by politicians, civil
    society and the general public, as one of the
    most important problems facing the country.
    Because of its intensity, it is having major
    negative economic and social implications, among

  • A- The brain drain associated with it is
    stripping the country of its most dynamic

  • B- The bias towards migration of young males
    resulted in a major increase in the celibacy
    rates of women.

Percentage never married females by major age
group, 1970 and 1996
  • The availability of mate ratio was calculated
    in 1997 for women 15-29 years of age as 7 males
    to 10 females.

  • C- Single educated women have begun a rising
    trend of emigration, to many parts of the world,
    including some Gulf countries.
  • D- The family support system is declining (see
    ageing below)

  • 2- Internal migration and population
    distribution.The uneven distribution of
    population, economic activities and living levels
    in the country have been a major development
    issue for a long time. About one third of the
    population lives in Greater Beirut where more
    than half of the national income is generated.
    Discrepancies among levels of living among the
    various regions of the country are quite

  • Poverty indicators in MDGs do not cover the whole
    spectrum above. Should be supplemented by social
    and economic indicators of urbanization such as
    urban primacy rates and regional distribution of
    economic activities.

3- Ageing
  • Total Fertility 1970 4.6 children 1996
    2.8 2004 1.7
  • This rapid decline in total fertility from 4.6
    children to below replacement in some 30 years
    has resulted in the rapid ageing of the
  • Population 65 1970 5 2005 7.5
    projected to 2025 around 10.

  • This is being accompanied by a decline in family
    support systems due, to a large extent, to
    international migration.
  • Thus, in spite of the recent increase in old age
    homes, they are presently overcrowded and the
    waiting list is fast growing.

Topic 3 The need for statistics
  • A study just completed by MADMA for a number of
    UN agencies (UNICEF, UNDP and ILO) looked into,
    among other things, the statistical needs for the
    proper evaluation of progress made towards the
    achievement of the MDGs. It was concluded that

  • Surveys needed
  • Population survey every 5 years.
  • Household budget survey every 5 years.
  • Family health survey every 5 years.
  • Labor force survey every 5 years.
  • Unemployment survey every 3 months.

  • Some of these surveys do not exist. Others have
    been undertaken but not on regular basis or
    regular intervals but depending on the
    availability of funds.

  • Current statistics needed
  • Vital statistics published monthly
  • Morbidity statistics published monthly (e.g.,
    HIV/AIDS, road accidents, etc.)
  • International population movement statistics.
  • School and university enrolment/graduation
    statistics published yearly.
  • Environment statistics published yearly.
  • National Accounts statistics published monthly.
  • ICT statistics published at short regular

  • Most current statistics were found either non
    existent (e.g. environment and ICT statistics),
    incomplete (e.g. vital statistics), or unreliable
    (international population movement statistics).

  • 1- There is an urgent need to take a fresh look
    at the plethora of development indicators from
    the regional point of view aimed at indicating,
    through a dialogue between policy makers and
    experts, what needs to be maximized first (i.e.,
    priorities among the indicators).

  • 2- There is also a need for the indicators to
    show the social pathologies often associated with
    development (high crime rates, suicide rates,
    drug abuse rates, divorce rates, etc.) in order
    to initiate a regional debate on how to conserve
    the good aspects of regional societies (low rates
    in all the above categories) while promoting
    economic development

  • 3- There is a need for a review and revision of
    the Lebanese MDGs with a view to eliminating the
    low priority indicators, low significance
    indicators and indicators that have already
    reached their maximum or thereabout, in favor of
    priority indicators some of which were indicated

  • 4- There is a need for a concerted effort by the
    international organizations in the coming
    programming cycle to reach an agreement with the
    government on a statistical program for the
    country that will be assisted by these
    organizations and that will at least cover the
    statistical needs for the proper evaluation of
    the development situation in the country,
    particularly for the evaluation of the revised
    set of MDG indicators.