The international globalized context is subject to the logic of an unbridled political and economic liberalism, that generates profound inequalities between different countries on one hand, and between different categories within those countries on the other hand. This context has become characterized, more than ever, by an increasing gap that is causing polarization with economic, social, and political dimensions, and which is mainly reflected in the division of the human community into two distinct camps: one is rich and the other is helpless and precarious.
This disparity and the feelings of injustice generated by it, cause frustrations, lead to outbreaks of violence, exacerbate insecurity, and threaten national peace and international stability. That is why governments try to address the causes of poverty, and strive to make every possible effort to mitigate the causes of socio-economic precariousness. In order to achieve that, governments try to proceed with the following measures: understanding major trends, anticipating possible changes, preventing abrupt social upheavals, and ensuring the forecast management of the expected changes.
The willingness of governments to understand the economic, sociocultural and psychological situation of their populations as precisely as possible, as well as to measure their well-being, and prevent the wrath that generates conflicts and instability; has led them to assess the level of human development of their people and the stage of their socio-cultural evolution, and quantify the multiform comfort to which these peoples have access. To this end, a range of standards, indexes, and indicators has been developed and used as a yardstick to resize various situations.
That is why we start referring to concepts such as: income per capita, access to health care, number of calories consumed, access to drinking water, phone, and electricity, gross enrollment ratio, etc.. But are these indexes that aim to measure human development really efficient to learn accurately about the real socioeconomic situation of the population of a given country?
Nothing is less certain! As a matter of fact, these criteria that are determined based on overall averages, tend to standardize results and ignore sharp differences. However, smoothing the rough edges, and making reading grids from averages that were roughly calculated and extrapolated, cannot lead to an accurate interpretation of the multidimensional disparities that make the inequality resulting from the wild economic liberalism, whose total lack of regulation has led, as everyone knows, to the crisis in which the world is still struggling.
That means that the Human Development Index used nowadays as a reference to measure the economic progress of societies, is a rough indicator of different situations, and is far from being a clear criterion that would allow understanding social phenomena in their full complexity, and with the required acuity. Therefore, the usefulness of the HDI in the fight against social problems should not be overestimated.
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