What Does Brunei Teach Us About Using Human Development Index Rankings as a Policy Tool?

18 Pages Posted: 2 Feb 2018

See all articles by Bryane Michael

Bryane Michael

University of Oxford; University of Hong Kong Faculty of Law

Date Written: March 2018

Abstract

The Bruneian Government has set an ambitious target to achieve a top 10 ranking on the United Nations Development Programme's (UNDP) Human Development Index (HDI) by 2035. To achieve its objective (described in a national strategy document called the Wawasan 2035), Brunei's economy needs to grow by 6% to 7%. Is setting an HDI target a good way to govern Brunei's policy‐making? Is it a good way to govern any country's policy‐making? In this article, we look at the role of HDI‐rank targets in economic and fiscal policy. We show that such a headline target (much like a profit target in a private company) automatically sets targets for growth in various economic sectors and fiscal policy targets. As such, HDI‐rank targeting may provide a useful mechanism for co‐ordinating development policies and for monitoring progress against a wide range of development goals using only one number.

Keywords: Brunei, construction sector, dynamic optimization, Human Development Index, public sector strategic planning

Suggested Citation

Michael, Bryane, What Does Brunei Teach Us About Using Human Development Index Rankings as a Policy Tool? (March 2018). Development Policy Review, Vol. 36, pp. O414-O431, 2018, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3116489 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/dpr.12341

Bryane Michael (Contact Author)

University of Oxford ( email )

South Parks Road
Oxford, Oxfordshire OX1 3QY
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://users.ox.ac.uk/~scat1663/

University of Hong Kong Faculty of Law ( email )

Pokfulam Road
Hong Kong, Hong Kong
China

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