(Sample Material) IAS PRE GS Online Coaching : Economic & Social Development - Important Indices

Sample Material of Our Online Coaching Programme

Subject: Economic & Social Development
Topic: Important Indices

Ques. 1 : What do you mean by Global Hunger Index?

Ans. The Global Hunger Index (GHI) is a multidimensional statistical tool used to describe the state of countries’ hunger situation. The Index is developed by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), Washington. Irish NGO Concern Worldwide joined the group as co-publisher later. India has been ranked 67, below neighbouring countries like China and Pakistan. The index rated 81 countries on the basis of three leading indicators- prevalence of child malnutrition, rate of child mortality, and the proportion of people who are calorie deficient.

China is rated much ahead of India at the fourth place, while Pakistan is at the 59th place on the 2011. In India, the high Index scores are driven by high levels of child underweight resulting from the low nutritional and social status of women in the country, the report pointed out, adding that India alone accounts for a large share of the world’s undernourished children.

Ques. 2 : Write a short notes on Global Gender Gap Index 2011?

Ans. According to the Global Gender Gap report issued by World Economic Forum, India is ranked 113 out of total 135 countries. Iceland topped the Global Gender Gap rankings showing greatest equality between men and women, followed by Norway, Finland, Sweden, and New Zealand respectively. Yemen was last in the list at 135.

The Global Gender Gap Report assesses 135 countries on how well they divide resources and opportunities amongst male and female populations. Gap is measured in the areas of economic participation and port unity, educational attainment, political empowerment, and health and survival.

The lower literacy rate of females (54%) in India is a prime reason of the gender gap. Though India’s higher Education system is third largest in the world, after China and the U.S.A. still the country manages a Literacy rate of just 65% and females stand far behind.

The report alarms India to take urgent steps to make women as equal partners in the society and eliminate tender inequality. Lesser gender gaps would also bring in an environment for the country to grow and prosper.
“Girls and women make up half of the world’s population and without their engagement, empowerment and contribution, we cannot hope to achieve a rapid economic recovery nor effectively tackle global za1lenges such as climate change food security and conflict,” said Klaus Schwab, founder and executive chairman, WEF, while releasing the report.

Not all sectors are seen as laggards when it comes to empowering women. Says Poornima Shenoy, President, India Semiconductor Association: “It is definitely heartening to see girls competing at every level with the boys. In the tech sector, we see a high percentage of girls joining the work stream. There are fewer women joining the hardware space due to preconceived notions which we need to actively address. My level of concern comes at the senior executive positions. We have only 2-3 per cent of positions filled by women at decision maker levels. This is due to the higher dropout rate at the mid management positions. It is often difficult for women to support children’s education needs, family responsibilities and increasing work pressures. Work today extends beyond office hours making women have to burn the candle at both ends. Mentoring and coaching by organisations are important at this stage.”

“Indian women have come a long way as they have started to make significant contribution in the corporate world, but few swallows don’t make a summer, India Inc has to go a long way in terms of gender equality at employment. Increased deployment of IT in the corporate sector, including areas such as automated process controls etc which traditionally were male dominated, has opened new vistas for women. Further, the growth of the IT and electronics industry itself - software, services has been a great blessing in terms of creating job opportunities for the fairer sex”.