The Human Development Index (Hdi) Vs The Gender Inequality Index (Gii)

4578 words - 18 pages

Introduction
The Human Development Index (HDI) was designed “as a frame of reference for both social and economic development” . With this index, as well as other cumulative indexes, there is a problem as to how well the index actually measures what it wants to measure; whether the data is accurately portraying the true reality of half of the population, or if it is only projecting the general consensus of a population skewed because the range of data is too big. An index that might more accurately portray half of the population of a country is the Gender Inequality Index (GII). The GII looks at the differences between men and women in a country. The index includes the level of empowerment for each gender within a country, labor market participation, and reproductive health values. Due to these subparts, the index can more accurately portray how well off women are within a country, and the level of equality in that country. This leads me to my question- to what extent do HDI and GII rankings in Cote d’Ivoire and Finland accurately portray the overall quality of life for women in those countries? While the HDI shows an overall consensus of how well off a country is, it does not show the differences between men and women, thus the GII gives a more accurate portrayal of a situation within a country; but the true indicator is the effectiveness of legislature and the government in that country, not the rankings that are given in a cumulative index. Despite laws that protect women in both Cote d’Ivoire and Finland the effectiveness of these laws are miniscule and disregarded in Cote d’Ivoire compared to Finland where the laws are enforced and motivate women to be active in government, thus in turn the overall quality of life is much greater there than in Cote d’Ivoire.
Cote d’Ivoire is ranked in the bottom 10 of the HDI, and there is clearly a lot of evidence as to why they are ranked so poorly. The country has grown in rankings since the creation of this index; however it is still considered to be a low developing country, and one that is very unequal, as shown with a 0.632 ranking in the Gender Inequality Index (in this index the closer the number is to one the more unequal the country is). This 0.632 ranking does not look at overall quality of life, like the HDI’s ranking, which is 0.466, but rather the inequality itself. For this reason, the HDI ranking gives a better picture of how developed a country is and when inequality is taken into account in its ranking, it shows the best portrayal of the state of development in a country. Cote d’Ivoire’s HDI ranking when adjusted for inequality has a 0.339 loss, from 0.466 to 0.287. . The ranking has improved over the past couple of years, but it still appears to be very unequal. In addition to this, mean years of schooling, secondary education, and literacy rates all favor men. The overall mean years of schooling is still a measly average of 4.2 years , the secondary education has an average...

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