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Setting the Weights: The Women’s Capabilities Index for Malawi

Giulia Greco ()
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Giulia Greco: London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine

Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, 2018, vol. 135, issue 2, 457-478

Abstract: Abstract Standard indicators of wellbeing such as the QALY for health and GDP per capita for economic development have been increasingly regarded as being too narrow in focus. There is a need to develop multidimensional measures of wellbeing that encompass the full range of factors that make life worth living. This study is part of a project that aims at developing a multidimensional index based on Sen’s capability framework to assess women’s wellbeing in rural Malawi: the Women's Capabilities Index. The project identifies a set of capabilities relevant to the context; proposes a methodology to measure robustly these capabilities; aggregates the capabilities into a single metric (index); and validates and tests the index. This paper focuses on the weighting and aggregation of the index. Four weighting methods of aggregation are chosen: two normative approaches; a data-driven approach; and a hybrid method. The different methods have implications on the results which are critically assessed and compared. This study contributes to the literature on the implications of adopting different methods for setting the weights in composite measures of wellbeing.

Keywords: Capability approach; Developing country; Quality of life; Wellbeing; Multidimensional index; Weights (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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