June 22, 2014 by Darius
[Several months ago I introduced the Darius Index, which aims to measure the discrepancy between a country’s wealth – as measured by GDP per capita – and what that country does with the money – as measured by the UN’s Human Development Index. See https://notwhatyoumightthink.wordpress.com/2014/03/05/thinking-aloud-the-darius-index/]
The country with the third most positive score on the Darius Index is New Zealand. In other words, New Zealand not only has a better human development score than its per capita GDP would suggest, it has the third-largest positive differential between its human development score and its per capita GDP.
New Zealand is an advanced, post-industrial economy that ranks among the wealthiest in the world (24th in per capita GDP). New Zealand’s high score on the Darius Index comes from the fact that it is exceptional in human development – #6 in the world.
Since 1980, GDP per capita has gone up by about 50%. In that time, expected years of schooling have risen from 13.5 years to a whopping 19.7 years – among the highest in the world. Life expectancy increased 7 years to 80 years – again, in the top cohort of countries. New Zealand is also ranked by Transparency International as the least corrupt country in the world.
Conclusion: New Zealand is definitely a place you want to be. 🙂