The coronavirus causes human development to regress for the first time since 1990

20 Mayo 2020
Economic Affairs

A new report from the United Nations Development Program warns of the deterioration of health, educational and quality of life conditions. The COVID-19 pandemic is also widening inequality. Only the implementation of coordinated measures based on equality could limit the effects of the crisis.

The coronavirus pandemic could set global human development back for the first time since 1990, calculated as a combination of educational, health and living conditions factors in the world, the United Nations Development Program warned this Wednesday ( UNDP).

The study indicates that the setbacks in basic elements of human development are already in place in most countries in all regions, rich or poor.

Thus, after the death of 300,000 people due to COVID-19, the estimates for this year point to a 4% drop in world income per capita.

Another factor to take into account is that, with the closure of schools, the UN Program estimates that the school dropout rate * causes 60% of minors not to receive any type of education, which places the global deschooling at levels unprecedented since the eighties of the last century.

The study highlights that “the combined impact of these shocks could lead to an unprecedented decline in levels of human development.”

“In the last thirty years the world has seen many crises, including the global financial crisis of 2007-2009. All have hit human development hard, but in general, global progress has been achieved each year, ”explains UNDP Administrator Achim Steiner. “The triple impact on health, education and income levels caused by COVID-19 can alter this trend.”

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COVID-19 widens inequalities

The report’s forecasts suggest that the decline in human development will be much greater in developing countries than in richer ones, since the former have fewer resources to manage the social and economic effects of the pandemic.

In the educational field, with the closure of schools and given the deep gaps in access to online learning, the UN Program estimates that in countries with low human development 86% of primary school children are currently without go to school, compared to 20% in countries with very high human development.

“However, with a more equitable access to the Internet that allows lagging countries to close the gap with respect to those that lead their development group, something that is feasible, current inequalities in education could be closed,” says the report.

Similarly, it highlights that concrete and equality-focused measures can boost the reaction of economies and societies so that the profound effects of the COVID-19 pandemic are mitigated.

“This crisis shows that if we are not able to integrate equity into our policies many people will be left behind. This is especially relevant in the case of the ‘new needs’ of the 21st century, such as internet access, which allows us to take advantage of the benefits of tele-education, telemedicine and working from home ”, says Pedro Conceição, director of the Office of the UNDP Human Development Report.

The application of measures focused on equality would have a reasonable cost, according to the study. For example, the UN Program estimates that closing the digital divide in low- and middle-income countries it would only cost 1% of fiscal stimulus packages approved worldwide so far in response to COVID-19.

The importance of equity policies is reflected in the United Nations Framework for the immediate socio-economic response to the COVID-19 crisis, which establishes basic criteria for good ecological governance and gender equality from which to build a “ new normal ”.

The framework recommends the adoption of five priority steps to address the complexity of this crisis

  • Protect health systems and services.
  • Improve social protection.
  • Protect jobs, small and medium enterprises, and workers in the informal sector.
  • Apply macroeconomic policies that benefit all people.
  • Promote peace, good governance and trust to reinforce social cohesion.

The UN Program calls on the international community to invest quickly in training developing countries to follow these steps.

20 Mayo 2020
Economic Affairs

A new report from the United Nations Development Program warns of the deterioration of health, educational and quality of life conditions. The COVID-19 pandemic is also widening inequality. Only the implementation of coordinated measures based on equality could limit the effects of the crisis.

The coronavirus pandemic could set global human development back for the first time since 1990, calculated as a combination of educational, health and living conditions factors in the world, the United Nations Development Program warned this Wednesday ( UNDP).

The study indicates that the setbacks in basic elements of human development are already in place in most countries in all regions, rich or poor.

Thus, after the death of 300,000 people due to COVID-19, the estimates for this year point to a 4% drop in world income per capita.

Another factor to take into account is that, with the closure of schools, the UN Program estimates that the school dropout rate * causes 60% of minors not to receive any type of education, which places the global deschooling at levels unprecedented since the eighties of the last century.

The study highlights that “the combined impact of these shocks could lead to an unprecedented decline in levels of human development.”

“In the last thirty years the world has seen many crises, including the global financial crisis of 2007-2009. All have hit human development hard, but in general, global progress has been achieved each year, ”explains UNDP Administrator Achim Steiner. “The triple impact on health, education and income levels caused by COVID-19 can alter this trend.”

[Descarga nuestra aplicación Noticias ONU para IOS o Android. O subscríbete a nuestro boletín.]

COVID-19 widens inequalities

The report’s forecasts suggest that the decline in human development will be much greater in developing countries than in richer ones, since the former have fewer resources to manage the social and economic effects of the pandemic.

In the educational field, with the closure of schools and given the deep gaps in access to online learning, the UN Program estimates that in countries with low human development 86% of primary school children are currently without go to school, compared to 20% in countries with very high human development.

“However, with a more equitable access to the Internet that allows lagging countries to close the gap with respect to those that lead their development group, something that is feasible, current inequalities in education could be closed,” says the report.

Similarly, it highlights that concrete and equality-focused measures can boost the reaction of economies and societies so that the profound effects of the COVID-19 pandemic are mitigated.

“This crisis shows that if we are not able to integrate equity into our policies many people will be left behind. This is especially relevant in the case of the ‘new needs’ of the 21st century, such as internet access, which allows us to take advantage of the benefits of tele-education, telemedicine and working from home ”, says Pedro Conceição, director of the Office of the UNDP Human Development Report.

The application of measures focused on equality would have a reasonable cost, according to the study. For example, the UN Program estimates that closing the digital divide in low- and middle-income countries it would only cost 1% of fiscal stimulus packages approved worldwide so far in response to COVID-19.

The importance of equity policies is reflected in the United Nations Framework for the immediate socio-economic response to the COVID-19 crisis, which establishes basic criteria for good ecological governance and gender equality from which to build a “ new normal ”.

The framework recommends the adoption of five priority steps to address the complexity of this crisis

  • Protect health systems and services.
  • Improve social protection.
  • Protect jobs, small and medium enterprises, and workers in the informal sector.
  • Apply macroeconomic policies that benefit all people.
  • Promote peace, good governance and trust to reinforce social cohesion.

The UN Program calls on the international community to invest quickly in training developing countries to follow these steps.