World Bank launches first Human Capital Index, Singapore tops list

The World Bank launched its first Human Capital Index (HCI) in Bali, Indonesia as part of the World Development Report 2019. The index ranks countries based on their success in developing human capital. The index ranks 157 countries based on their education and health outcomes and the impact they are having on productivity. While Singapore tops the rankings, African countries occupying the bottom spots.

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Key Highlights

  • The index measures the Index outcomes for each country as a fraction of maximum value of 1.It also measures the mortality rate for children under five, early childhood stunting rates due to malnutrition and other factors and health outcomes based on the proportion of 15-year-olds who survive until age 60.

     Further, it measures a country’s educational achievement based on the years of schooling a child can expect to obtain by age 18, combined with a country’s relative performance on international student achievement tests.

  •  The index found that on an average 56 percent of children born today will forego more than half their potential lifetime earnings because governments were not investing adequately to ensure their people are healthy, educated and ready for an evolving workplace.

About Human Capital Index


  • The human capital index, which has been modeled on the World Bank’s existing doing business index that assesses national business conditions, aims to create a similar ranking for countries based on how well they look after their people.
  • The index claims to seek to measure the amount of human capital that a child born today can expect to attain by age 18.
  • The HCI index values are contended to convey the productivity of the next generation of workers, compared to a benchmark of complete standard education and full health.

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