Romania ranks again 45th out of 163 countries and is surpassed by all the other EU member states, according to the 2020 Social Progress Index, which analyzes the quality of life and social wellbeing and is conducted by the non-profit organization Social Progress Imperative with the support of Deloitte. Romania registers a score of 78.35 points out of 100, slightly higher than last year, which places it among the ranking’s third category countries, after Barbados, Bulgaria and Mauritius.
The Social Progress Index (SPI) measures the quality of life and social wellbeing of citizens from 163 countries, based on the analysis of three main dimensions. The methodology consists of assigning a score for basic needs category items – nutrition and basic medical care, water and sanitation, shelter and personal safety -, for wellbeing category items – access to basic knowledge, access to information and communications, health and wellness, environmental quality – and for opportunities category – personal rights, personal freedom and choice, inclusiveness, access to advanced education. Based on the score, the countries in the ranking are grouped into six categories arranged in descending order.
“The study points out that, in the absence of immediate measures which can contribute to a sustainable recovery of the world economy, the COVID-19 pandemic threatens to set social progress back by ten years. In Romania’s case, the current crisis emerged right after the best economic year recorded in our country’s history, 2019, which leads to the fact that its effects, which are already visible in indicators such as unemployment or economic decline, are not yet obvious in the social progress index, whose level is slightly higher than last year. Nevertheless, the threat of regression which is lying upon the entire world is also valid for us,” said Alexandru Reff, Country Managing Partner, Deloitte Romania and Moldova.
In the global ranking, Romania is in the top 50 countries in two of the three analyzed categories, basic needs (45th place) and opportunities (49th place), while in the wellbeing category it ranks 57th. Analyzing the values assigned for each of the coordinates falling into these three categories, our country obtained the best scores for personal safety (36th place), personal rights (46th place), access to advanced education (49th place) and access to communications and information (49th place). On the other hand, the coordinates analyzed for Romania that recorded lower scores are inclusiveness (91st place), shelter (90th place), health and wellness (85th place).
Norway continues to rank first in the world
• In 2020, Norway, Denmark and Finland occupy the first places in the ranking, while Central African Republic, Chad and South Sudan are on the last positions.
• The EU member states, except Croatia, Hungary, Bulgaria and Romania, are in the first two categories of countries in the ranking, with a good quality of life.
• Among the Central and Eastern Europe countries, the best place is occupied by Slovenia (22), followed by Estonia (24), the Czech Republic (25), Poland (31), Lithuania (32), Latvia (35), Slovakia (36), Croatia (39), Hungary (40), Bulgaria (43) and Romania (45).
Overview of index changes in the last ten years
In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, the quality of life and social wellbeing declined for the first time in the last ten years.
The global average on social progress increased from 60.63 out of 100 in 2011, to 64.24 in 2020.
• Between 2011 and 2020, 155 of the analyzed countries experienced an improvement of at least one point in the quality of life and social wellbeing, while 42% of them improved by five or more points. The United States, Brazil and Hungary are the only three countries that have seen a decline in the social progress index during this period.
• Since 2011 until now, the coordinates that have improved globally are access to information and communications, access to advanced education, shelter and water and sanitation.
• Personal rights and inclusiveness are among the indicators that have declined over the reviewed period, while personal safety and environmental quality have stagnated.