Quantitative Analysis of Sustainable Development: A Case Study of Northwest Indiana

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K Surekha Rao Ph.D.


Human development is generally measured by the ability to have food, level of literacy and the capacity to live a long and healthy life, whereas sustainable development implies a healthy lifestyle with fresh air, clean water and pure natural surroundings. This premise of sustainable development has lead to the convergence of conventional quality of life concept with that of the quality of environment. In this paper we propose an indicator, the Sustainable development Index or SDI that combines the traditional quality of life indicators like personal income, educational attainment and healthcare facilities with some important environmental quality indicators like the quality of air, land and water, biodiversity and use of natural resources. Empirical application of this index to the counties of northwest Indiana demonstrates its usefulness for comparing and ranking different regions in terms of sustainable development.


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