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African Proverb

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Ranking Africa’s Human Development

Africa’s Human Development Index (HDI) is a numerical scale from one to 189 used to measure an African country's overall success in its education and economic measurements using data from long and healthy life, access to education, high Gross National Income creating an adequate standard of living.


One the best 189 the worst Human Development Index ranking scores explanied.


Human Development Index Scores Africa

In regards to HDI rankings, Norway is ranked #1, The United States of America is ranked #15 and the Republic of the Niger in West Africa is ranked #189, the lowest score possible on the HDI scale.

1. HDI health measurement is calculated by life expectancy at birth.

2. HDI education aspect is measured by average of years of schooling for adults aged 25 years and older and expected years of schooling for children of school entering age.

3. The GNI or Gross National Income is in US dollars and is the money earned in a year per person before any tax income is deducted, the HDI standard of living component is measured by gross national income for each person.

Ok so what do these three points mean collectively? Long and healthy life + Higher access to education + High GNI income creating a decent standard of living = Lower Human Development Index Scores. Lower scores are better scores when it comes to the Human Development Index scale.


Africa’s best to worst Human Development Index Scores (HDI) ranking list. (lower the score the better)


Country Lifespan School Years GNI HDI Score
Seychelles 73 9 25,076 62
Mauritius 74 9 22,724 66
Algeria 76 7 13,639 81
Tunisia 76 7 10,676 91
Botswana 69 9 15,951 97
Libya 72 7 11,684 111
South Africa 63 10 11,756 111
Gabon 66 8 15,794 114
Egypt 71 7 10,743 116
Morocco 76 5 7,479 121
Cabo Verde 72 6 6,513 128
Namibia 63 6 9,682 129
Sao Tome and Principe 70 6 3,024 138
Congo 64 6.5 5,803 136
Eswatini 59 6 9,359 138
Ghana 63 7 4,098 142
Zambia 63 7 3,581 144
Equatorial Guinea 58 5.5 1,7795 143
Kenya 66.3 6.5 3,051 148
Angola 60 5 5,554 147
Cameroon 58 6.2 3,291 150
Zimbabwe 61 8 2,661 153
Rwanda 68 4.4 1,958 158
Nigeria 54 6 5,085 157
Tanzania 65 6 2,805 160
Uganda 62 6 1,752 160
Mauritania 64 4.6 3,746 159
Madagascar 66 6.1 1,403 162
Benin 61 3.7 2,134 163
Lesotho 53 6.3 3,243 164
Côte d'Ivoire 57 5 3,589 165
Senegal 67 3 3,255 166
Togo 60 4.9 1,592 166
Sudan 65 3.7 3,961 168
Djibouti 66.5 4 3,600 171
Malawi 63.7 4 1,159 172
Ethiopia 66 2.7 1,781 173
The Gambia 61 3.6 1,489 178
Guinea 61 2.7 2,211 175
Liberia 63 4.6 1,040 173
Guinea-Bissau 58 3.3 1,593 177
DRC 60 6.7 800 179
Mozambique 60 3.5 1,153 180
Sierra Leone 54 3.6 1,381 181
Burkina Faso 61 1.5 1,705 183
Eritrea 65 3.9 1,707 182
Mali 58 2 1,965 184
Burundi 61 3 659 185
South Sudan 57 4 1,455 186
Chad 53.9 2 1,715 187
Central African Republic 52 4.2 776 188
Niger 62 2 912 189
Africa’s Human Development Index Scores From Best to Worst.

Explaining HDI criteria of long and healthy life, access to education and a decent standard of living.


What is life expectancy at birth? Life expectancy at birth is defined as how long, on average, a newborn can expect to live, if current death rates do not change.

What is access to education? Access to education is the ability of all people to have equal opportunity in education not an actual education. Children and adolescents are excluded from education for many reasons. 

Poverty remains one of the most obstinate barriers, with children from the poorest households almost five times more likely to be out of primary school than those from the richest. Location also keeps children from school. 

Children from rural areas are more than twice as likely to be out of primary school than their urban peers. In conflict zones, 27 million children are out of school. Children with disabilities and from ethnic minorities are also more likely to be left behind.

What is a decent standard of living (DSL)? A decent standard of living is the capability of living a healthy life, guaranteeing physical and social mobility, communicating and participating in the life of the community.


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Being African in America I have grown up learning about different ethnic cultures. My mother is a historian of African culture and history and her influence expanded my activities to several best-selling cookbooks, magazine columns, self-branded products, and a popular African culture and food blog.

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