Friday, December 9, 2011

HDI Index by province

While monitoring the "Provinces of Thailand" page on Wikipedia, I noticed that a user has added a "List of Thailand provinces by Human Development Index". I only looked into it in detail because I noticed that all the provinces were linked to the province capital or a disambiguation page, but not the actual article on the province.

Yet first a short explanation on the Human Development Index (HDI) intends to encode how much the society has developed, combining the life expectancy, education and literacy as well as the student enrollment, and the gross domestic product into a single numerical value. The highest value of 0.943 is reached by Norway, the lowest of 0.286 by the Democratic Republic of Congo. Thailand as a country reaches 0.682, a medium development.

As the above listed indicators could also be applied to country subdivisions, it is possible to show the best and least developed parts of country as well. Thus I turned the values in that list into a nice map, using colors from green to red to encode the different values found in the provinces - it is interesting that not just Bangkok and Phuket reach a very high value, but also the province Chiang Mai. And not all of the northeastern provinces have low values, Udon Thani, Khon Kaen, Nakhon Ratchasima and Ubon Ratchathani all are above country average as well, whereas some of the central provinces like Ayutthaya score quite low.

However, one of the problems of the list can be seen in the map already - there are several provinces without colors, as the list only includes 51 provinces. And while it includes Bueng Kan and Nong Khai before and after the split, it also includes Pattaya which is no province at all. But the biggest problem is that it completely lacks any references, thus I have no idea if the numbers are valid, who and how calculated them.

No comments: