Human Development Report 2009
Monday, October 5, 2009
In Central America Costa Rica is at the top (with 54 in overall ranking), followed by Panama (60), El Salvador (106), Honduras (112), Guatemala (122), and Nicaragua (124).
"This report breaks new ground in applying a human development approach to the study of migration. It discusses who migrants are, where they come from and go to, and why they move. It looks at the multiple impacts of migration for all who are affected by it–not just those who move, but also those who stay."

Overcoming barriers:
Human mobility and development
Human development is about putting people at the centre of development. It is about people realizing their potential, increasing their choices and enjoying the freedom to lead lives they value. Since 1990, annual Human Development Reports have explored challenges including poverty, gender, democracy, human rights, cultural liberty, globalization, water scarcity and climate change.

Migration, both within and beyond borders, has become an increasingly prominent theme in domestic and international debates, and is the topic of the 2009 Human Development Report (HDR09). The starting point is that the global distribution of capabilities is extraordinarily unequal, and that this is a major driver for movement of people. Migration can expand their choices —in terms of incomes, accessing services and participation, for example— but the opportunities open to people vary from those who are best endowed to those with limited skills and assets. These underlying inequalities, which can be compounded by policy distortions, is a theme of the report.

The report investigates migration in the context of demographic changes and trends in both growth and inequality. It also presents more detailed and nuanced individual, family and village experiences, and explores less visible movements typically pursued by disadvantaged groups such as short term and seasonal migration.

There is a range of evidence about the positive impacts of migration on human development, through such avenues as increased household incomes and improved access to education and health services. There is further evidence that migration can empower traditionally disadvantaged groups, in particular women. At the same time, risks to human development are also present where migration is a reaction to threats and denial of choice, and where regular opportunities for movement are constrained.

National and local policies play a critical role in enabling better human development outcomes for both those who choose to move in order to improve their circumstances, and those forced to relocate due to conflict, environmental degradation, or other reasons. Host country restrictions can raise both the costs and the risks of migration. Similarly, negative outcomes can arise at the country levels where basic civic rights, like voting, schooling and health care are denied to those who have moved across provincial lines to work and live. HDR09 shows how a human development approach can be a means to redress some of the underlying issues that erode the potential benefits of mobility and/or force migration.
Source:United Nations Development Programme
Source:United Nations Development Programme
More on this topic
El Salvador is Losing its Human Resources
April 2015
The emigration of six out of seven Salvadorans who have studied for 12 years or more is removing a vital resource for economic performance, preventing improvements to labor productivity in the country.
Up until 2000, 85% of high school and college graduates with twelve or more years of education had migrated, reveals the study 'Measuring the international mobility of skilled workers'. The paper also shows that El Salvador ranks ninth in the list of countries with the highest rates of emigration of highly educated workers, reaching 31.5%.
Human Development Report 2011
November 2011
According to the UN Development Program (UNDP) index, within Central America Panama comes first at no. 58 followed by Costa Rica (69), El Salvador (105), Honduras (121), Nicaragua (129) and Guatemala at no. 131.
While Panama's ranking has moved up one spot since the last time the UNDP Human Development Index (HDI) was published, Costa Rica and Honduras have slipped back a place.
Human Development Report 2009
October 2009
In Central America Costa Rica is at the top (with 54 in overall ranking), followed by Panama (60), El Salvador (106), Honduras (112), Guatemala (122), and Nicaragua (124).
"This report breaks new ground in applying a human development approach to the study of migration. It discusses who migrants are, where they come from and go to, and why they move. It looks at the multiple impacts of migration for all who are affected by it–not just those who move, but also those who stay."
Global Gender Gap Report 2008
November 2008
In Central America, the World Economic Forum places Costa Rica first (32 in the world), Panama (34), Honduras (47), El Salvador (58), Nicaragua (71) and Guatemala (112).
The Global Gender Gap Index scores can be interpreted as the percentage of the gap between women and men that has been closed. The three highest ranking countries have closed a little over 80% of their gender gaps, while the lowest ranking country has closed only a little over 45% of its gender gap. Out of the 128 countries covered in both 2007 and 2008, more than two-thirds have posted gains in overall index scores, indicating that the world in general has made progress towards equality between men and women. Additionally, taking averages across the subindexes for these 128 countries reveals that, globally, progress has been made on narrowing the gaps in educational attainment, political empowerment and economic participation, while the gap in health has widened.
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