Build Your Own Index: UNDP provides free web access to 40 years of data

Nov 4, 2010

Website re-launched for 20th anniversary of Human Development Report with new interactive data tools, 20 years of past reports, expanded statistical resources.

United Nations, 4 November 2010—The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) today re-launched its Human Development Report website ( with extensive new resources, interactive tools and revised statistical country profiles for all UN member states.

The website features the new 2010 Human Development Report, titled The Real Wealth of Nations: Pathways to Human Development, released today worldwide in nine different language editions in hardcover and online. The 20th anniversary Report includes the new Human Development Index (HDI) and three new supplementary indices: the Inequality-adjusted HDI, the Gender Inequality Index and the Multidimensional Poverty Index.

In its major innovations, the Human Development Report website also now features:

  • a user-friendly “build your own index” option, drawing on extensive HDI databases
  • an interactive visualization tool for all countries in the HDI
  • an interactive map with the latest international development statistics
  • an updated database permitting long-term statistical comparisons

With these new online tools and a greatly expanded database of international data, visitors can explore statistics, generate graphs and images, extract tables of data, and retrieve country profiles with the most current internationally vetted statistics on income, health, education and other development areas. 

As has always been UNDP policy, all reports and data on the website can be accessed and downloaded free of charge. This includes all 20 years of the annual Human Development Reports, including the 2010 Report, which are available in the most current PDF and e-book formats. Background research for the reports is also available on line.

Since 1990, more than 140 countries have adopted the Human Development Report framework for their own policy and analytical purposes, producing more than 600 national Human Development Reports with UNDP support. Most are also available on the website. UNDP has also sponsored scores of independently drafted regional reports, such as the much-praised ten-volume Arab Human Development Report series, which can also be downloaded free of charge.

The website—available in English, French and Spanish, with portals to Human Development Reports and other materials in many other languages—features new videos showcasing multigenerational families around the world telling their own personal stories about human development progress over the past several decades.

The website also has an exclusive video interview on the origins and impact of the Human Development Report with Nobel laureate Amartya Sen, who helped develop the HDI with report series founder, the late economist Mahbub ul Haq. Videos on human development subjects, including climate change, migration and water scarcity, are also available at