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Human Capital Project

A Project for the World

What is the World Bank's Human Capital Index?

Pillars of the Human Capital Project

This effort is about building human capital in all countries. In order to get there, we must work on several levels. 

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    The Human Capital Index

    The Human Capital Index quantifies the contribution of health and education to the productivity of the next generation of workers. Countries can use it to assess how much income they are foregoing because of human capital gaps, and how much faster they can turn these losses into gains if they act now. The index is explained in The Human Capital Project Booklet.
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    Measurement & Research

    Credible measurement of education and health outcomes is critical locally, nationally, and globally. Within countries, measurement leads to insights into what works and where to target resources. It also increases policy makers’ awareness of the importance of investing in human capital, creating momentum for action. Globally, comprehensive measurement sheds light on the differences between countries, and spurs demand for investments in people.
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    Country Engagement

    The Human Capital Project will help countries tackle the worst barriers to human capital development, using a “whole of government” approach. Work has begun to support over 40 countries who have expressed keen interest and will extend to more countries in the coming months. In addition, a number of “Human Capital Champions”—world leaders, thought leaders, celebrities, and others—have signed on to advocate for investments in the next generation. Click below to watch the Human Capital Summit, attended by thousands, that took place in Bali on October 11, 2018.

What is Human Capital and What is the Human Capital Project?

Human capital consists of the knowledge, skills, and health that people accumulate throughout their lives, enabling them to realize their potential as productive members of society. We can end extreme poverty and create more inclusive societies by developing human capital. This requires investing in people through nutrition, health care, quality education, jobs and skills.

Why now? The cost of inaction on human capital development is going up. Without human capital, countries cannot sustain economic growth, will not have a workforce that is prepared for the more highly-skilled jobs of the future, and will not compete effectively in the global economy.

What is the World Bank’s response? The World Bank Group announced the Human Capital Project in 2017. Work is underway, with a new Human Capital Index launched in October 2018 at the Annual Meetings held in Bali Indonesia. Ministers from close to 30 pilot countries presented early ideas on how to accelerate investments, followed by a rare opportunity for their staff to work across regions and sectors in person.

How will the Human Capital Project have an impact? The Human Capital Project is expected to help create the political space for national leaders to prioritize transformational human capital investments. The objective is rapid progress towards a world in which all children arrive in school well-nourished and ready to learn, can expect to attain real learning in the classroom, and are able to enter the job market as healthy, skilled, and productive adults.

Where can I learn more? Learn more about human capital by reading through the stories, blogs, and frequently asked questions (FAQ) on this page. Watch the recoding of the Human Capital Summit, follow updates from the 2019 World Development Report, The Changing Nature of Work, and join others talking about why we must #InvestinPeople. Finally, be sure to check this site for updates and read more about the Human Capital Project.

Human Capital Index: Country Briefs and Data

Download 2-page briefs that put country data in perspective, and specialized Excel files that report detailed data, data sources, and methodology.

Afghanistan

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Albania

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Algeria

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Angola

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Argentina

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Armenia

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Australia

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Austria

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Azerbaijan

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Bahrain

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Bangladesh

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Belgium

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Benin

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Bosnia and Herzegovina

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Botswana

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Brazil

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Bulgaria

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Burkina Faso

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Burundi

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Cambodia

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Cameroon

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Canada

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Chad

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Chile

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China

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Colombia

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Comoros

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Congo, Dem. Rep.

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Congo, Rep.

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Costa Rica

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Côte d'Ivoire

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Croatia

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Cyprus

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Czech Republic

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Denmark

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Dominican Republic

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Ecuador

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Egypt, Arab Rep.

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El Salvador

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Estonia

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Ethiopia

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Finland

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France

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Gabon

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Gambia, The

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Georgia

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Germany

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Ghana

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Greece

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Guatemala

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Guinea

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Guyana

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Haiti

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Honduras

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Hong Kong SAR, China

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Hungary

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Iceland

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India

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Indonesia

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Iran, Islamic Rep.

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Iraq

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Ireland

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Israel

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Italy

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Jamaica

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Japan

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Jordan

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Kazakhstan

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Kenya

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Kiribati

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Korea, Rep.

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Kosovo

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Kuwait

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Kyrgyz Republic

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Lao PDR

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Latvia

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Lebanon

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Lesotho

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Liberia

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Lithuania

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Luxembourg

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Macao SAR, China

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Macedonia, FYR

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Madagascar

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Malawi

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Malaysia

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Mali

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Malta

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Mauritania

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Mauritius

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Mexico

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Moldova

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Mongolia

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Montenegro

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Morocco

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Mozambique

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Myanmar

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Namibia

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Nepal

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Netherlands

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New Zealand

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Nicaragua

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Niger

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Nigeria

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Norway

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Oman

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Pakistan

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Panama

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Papua New Guinea

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Paraguay

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Peru

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Philippines

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Poland

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Portugal

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Qatar

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Romania

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Russian Federation

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Rwanda

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Saudi Arabia

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Senegal

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Serbia

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Seychelles

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Sierra Leone

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Singapore

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Slovak Republic

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Slovenia

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Solomon Islands

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South Africa

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South Sudan

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Spain

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Sri Lanka

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Sudan

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eSwatini

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Sweden

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Switzerland

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Tajikistan

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Tanzania

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Thailand

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Timor-Leste

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Togo

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Tonga

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Trinidad and Tobago

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Tunisia

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Turkey

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Tuvalu

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Uganda

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Ukraine

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United Arab Emirates

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United Kingdom

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United States

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Uruguay

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Vanuatu

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Vietnam

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West Bank and Gaza

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Yemen, Rep.

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Zambia

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Zimbabwe

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The Changing Nature of Work

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The World Development Report (WDR) 2019: The Changing Nature of Work studies how the nature of work is changing as a result of advances in technology today. Fears that robots will take away jobs from people have dominated the discussion over the future of work, but the Report finds that on balance this appears to be unfounded. Work is constantly reshaped by technological progress. Firms adopt new ways of production, markets expand, and societies evolve. Overall, technology provides opportunities to create new jobs, increase productivity, and deliver effective public services. In the process, however, technology is changing the skills being rewarded in the labor market. Technology has disproportionately reduced demand for less skilled workers while raising the premium on high-order cognitive skills. Building the skills in demand in the labor market requires strong human capital foundations and lifelong learning. The Report emphasizes that investing in human capital must be a priority in order to make the most of the changing nature of work.

The Report dives deep into the benefits of productive human capital. Using the new Human Capital Index, countries can quantify the contribution of health and education to the productivity and income levels of the next generation and assess how much income they are foregoing because of human capital gaps, and how much faster they can turn these losses into gains if they act now. Chapter 3 of the Report provides an in-depth look at the Human Capital Index methodology and what makes it such an effective global benchmark.

Connect With Us

World Bank Group

1818 H Street, N.W. Washington, DC 20433 USA.

Send us an email at humancapital@worldbank.org

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