Human Development and Freedom: Canada vs. Africa Admission Essay by Charles056

Human Development and Freedom: Canada vs. Africa
A research paper on the relationship between the Human Development Index (HDI) and freedom that compares Canada to the Democratic Republic of Congo.
# 154054 | 2,157 words | 8 sources | 2014 | CA

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From the Paper:

"Throughout global studies today, different standards of living are constantly debated. The greatest focus in recent years has been on poverty and its many faces. For many years, poverty was solely determined by a person's income and economic ability. However, poverty has become a much more multi-dimensional subject. In 1990, two economists began to measure poverty using the Human Development Index (HDI) which considers three indicators: health, education, and living standards (Human Development Index, 2013). This places countries into different tiers of development. Another significant aspect to consider with regards to poverty and standard of life is freedom.
"Freedom means many different things to many different people. As Canadian citizens, we live freely and are surrounded by a relatively free press, meaning there is little to no censorship and our mobility is not restricted. Of course, this factor varies widely across the globe depending on several factors, including regime type, politics, and gender. Here, I seek to determine the relationship between a country's HDI ranking and it's level of freedom. Does a high level of freedom guarantee a good HDI ranking, and vice versa? I will determine this by studying the HDI and freedom rankings from two countries on each continent. Additionally, I will ensure the full understanding/explanation of the indicators leading to each conclusive rank. These rankings are recorded on their respective websites, provided by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), FreedomHouse and the World Bank.
"Theory and Hypothesis: I hypothesize that there will be a positive correlation; the more free a country is, the more successful it will be in terms of the three facets of HDI: living standard, education, and health. There is significant legitimacy behind my expectations. When studying international development, it is often insinuated that countries with high poverty rates are less developed in terms of democracy. Democracy is popularly linked to freedom, and thus the relationship between freedom and poverty is negative. In Robert Guest's article, "Why is Africa so poor?" he touches on poverty in Mozambique and it's civil war, draining citizens of their freedom (Guest, 2004). This is an example of the common inference that poverty and freedom do not coexist."

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