The Human Capital Index (HCI) is an international metric that benchmarks key components of human capital across countries.
Measuring the human capital that a child born today can expect to attain by her 18th birthday, the HCI highlights how current health and education outcomes shape the productivity of the next generation of workers.
In this way, it underscores the importance for governments and societies of investing in the human capital of their citizens.
The HCI was launched in 2018 as part of the Human Capital Project (HCP), a lobal effort to accelerate progress towards a world where all children can achieve their full potential.
The 2020 Human Capital Index update includes health and education data for 174 countries covering 98 per cent of the world’s population up to March 2020, providing a pre-pandemic baseline on the health and education of children, with the biggest strides made in low-income countries..
India’s score increased to 0.49 from 0.44 in 2018, as per the Human Capital Index report released by the World Bank on Wednesday.
India has been ranked at the 116th position in the latest edition of the World Bank’s annual
The analysis shows that pre-pandemic, most countries had made steady progress in building human capital of children, with the biggest strides made in low-income countries.
Despite this progress, and even before the effects of the pandemic, a child born in a typical country could expect to achieve just 56 per cent of their potential human capital, relative to a benchmark of complete education and full health, the Bank said.
“The pandemic puts at risk the decade’s progress in building human capital, including the improvements in health, survival rates, school enrollment, and reduced stunting.
The economic impact of the pandemic has been particularly deep for women and for the most disadvantaged families, leaving many vulnerable to food insecurity and poverty,” said World Bank Group President David Malpass.
Protecting and investing in people is vital as countries work to lay the foundation for sustainable, inclusive recoveries and future growth.
Due to the pandemic’s impact, most children more than 1 billion have been out of school and could lose out, on average, half a year of schooling, adjusted for learning, translating into considerable monetary losses.
Data also shows significant disruptions to essential health services for women and children, with many children missing out on crucial vaccinations.