Human Development Report 2019


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Human Development Report 2019

December 9, 2019

Beyond income, beyond averages, beyond today: Inequalities in human development in the 21st century

Understanding how to address today’s disquiet requires looking “Beyond Income, Beyond Averages and Beyond Today,” as this Human Development Report sets out to do. Too often, inequality is framed around economics, fed and measured by the notion that making money is the most important thing in life. But societies are creaking under the strain of this assumption, and while people may protest to keep pennies in their pockets, power is the protagonist of this story: the power of the few; the powerlessness of many; and collective power of the people to demand change.

Going beyond income will require tackling entrenched interests—the social and political norms embedded deep within a nation’s or a group’s history and culture. Looking beyond today, the 2019 Human Development Report articulates the rise of a new generation of inequalities. Just as the gap in basic living standards is narrowing, with an unprecedented number of
people in the world escaping poverty, hunger and disease, the abilities people will need to compete in the immediate future have evolved.