TOKYO, Japan — The United Nations today launched its Human Development Report (HDR) for 2014 which considered, for the first time, the concepts of vulnerability and resilience in assessing human development progress.

Cuba, The Bahamas and Barbados ranked first to third in the Caribbean in human development index (HDI) rankings, with the Dominican Republic, Guyana and Haiti falling in the region’s bottom three.

On paper, the most dramatic fall in rankings were observed in Barbados and Dominica (which both fell 21 places on the HDI table), as well as Jamaica and Grenada, which fell 16 and 11 slots respectively. The most dramatic increase in the region was seen by Cuba, which rose 15 places on the table.

While every society is vulnerable to risk, some suffer far less harm and recover more quickly than others when adversity strikes.
— Helen Clarke, Administrator, UNDP

A new approach to assessing development: In taking a life-cycle approach, the report also considered the different risks faced by children, adolescents and the elderly, and stressed the importance of building capacity to cope with and recover from shocks and disaster.  The report further took into consideration disparities within countries, and identified various “structurally vulnerable” gender, economic and social groups. The report also called on states to ensure universal access to health and education, and to forge stronger social protections, with a commitment to full employment.

The report will prove valuable for developing countries engaged in the United Nations’ negotiations on the post-2015 development agenda and the articulation of new sustainable development goals, which are of particular interest to vulnerable Caribbean states.

Rankings explained: The UNDP has cautioned that due to the new metrics used in the 2014 report, HDI values and ranks are not comparable to those published in earlier editions. The 2014 report, for example, is based on  2011 data, whereas reports for the previous five years were based on data from 2005. New methodologies for calculating  purchasing power parity, gross national income and life expectancy were also used in computing the 2014 report’s HDI values.

[tw-tabs tab1=”Rankings (± 2013 rank)” tab2=”Rankings(±2013 HDI value)” tab3=”Links” ] [tw-tab]44. Cuba (+15)
51. Bahamas (-2)
59. Barbados (-21)
61. Antigua & Barbuda (+6)
64. Trinidad & Tobago (+3)
73. St. Kitts & Nevis (-1)
79. Grenada (-16)
84. Belize (+12)
91. St. Vincent & the Grenadines (8)
93. Dominica (-21)
96. Jamaica (-11)
97. St. Lucia (-9)
102. Dominican Republic (-6)
121. Guyana (-3)
168. Haiti (-7)[/tw-tab] [tw-tab]51. Bahamas (=)
59. Barbados (-1)
61. Antigua & Barbuda (-1)
64. Trinidad & Tobago (=)
73. St. Kitts & Nevis (=)
79. Grenada (-1)
84. Belize (=)
91. St. Vincent & the Grenadines (=)
93. Dominica (-1)
96. Jamaica (-3)
97. St. Lucia (-4)
102. Dominican Republic (=)
121. Guyana (=)
168. Haiti (=)[/tw-tab] [tw-tab]UN Human Development Report 2014 (Full)
UN Human Development Report (Summary)
UN Human Development Report (Statistical Tables)[/tw-tab] [/tw-tabs]

 

This table shows a comparison of the rankings for 2013 v. 2014, and the actual change in the HDI value for the two years under review. 

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Jovan Reid, Executive Editor

Jovan Reid is AMG's Chief of Public Policy and Advocacy