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The Sustainable Child Development Index (SCDI) for Countries

Ya-Ju Chang (), Annekatrin Lehmann (), Lisa Winter () and Matthias Finkbeiner ()
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Ya-Ju Chang: Institute of Environmental Technology, Technische Universität Berlin, Straße des 17. Juni 135, 10623 Berlin, Germany
Annekatrin Lehmann: Institute of Environmental Technology, Technische Universität Berlin, Straße des 17. Juni 135, 10623 Berlin, Germany
Lisa Winter: Institute of Environmental Technology, Technische Universität Berlin, Straße des 17. Juni 135, 10623 Berlin, Germany
Matthias Finkbeiner: Institute of Environmental Technology, Technische Universität Berlin, Straße des 17. Juni 135, 10623 Berlin, Germany

Sustainability, 2018, vol. 10, issue 5, 1-21

Abstract: Despite the relevance of children in inheriting and shaping society, an index assessing sustainable development with a focus on children is missing. To tackle this gap, this study established the Sustainable Child Development Index (SCDI) by considering child development topics in the context of inter-generational equity and applying indicators with available statistical data on country level. The SCDI at present addresses health, education, safety, economic status and environmental aspects described by 25 indicators. By taking reference points derived from the targets of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the SCDI scores for the year 2015 were calculated for 138 countries and then classified into four sustainable child development levels (very high, high, medium and low). The results showed great regional inequality on the status of sustainable child development. European countries generally have better status of sustainable child development. By contrast, 90% of African and 76% of Asian countries were classified as countries with medium and low levels. Moreover, the comparison of the SCDI, the Human Development Index (HDI) and the Child Development Index (CDI) based on correlation analysis and 10-year (2006–2015) country rankings demonstrated that the SCDI can complement existing development indices to provide a more comprehensive evaluation of sustainable development.

Keywords: Sustainable Child Development Index (SCDI); child development; inter-generational equity; sustainability assessment; sustainable development; Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 O13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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