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Story Highlights

  • Jamaica is being commended by the United States-based Social Progress Imperative for significant achievement in the area of Access to Information and Communication.
  • In its recent publication, Jamaica outperformed the United States with a score of 82.07 per cent in the category. The United States scored 81.33 per cent.
  • A breakdown of the data provided by the SPI shows that Jamaica recorded a score of 76.34 per cent in the areas of foundations of wellbeing.

Jamaica is being commended by the United States-based Social Progress Imperative for significant achievement in the area of Access to Information and Communication.

In its recent publication, Jamaica outperformed the United States with a score of 82.07 per cent in the category. The United States scored 81.33 per cent.

Social Progress Imperative also lauded the country’s performance in three basic areas of human well-being on the entity’s Social Progress Index (SPI) – Basic Human Needs; Foundations of Wellbeing; and Opportunity – which saw the island recording a cumulative 70.39 per cent score.

A breakdown of the data provided by the SPI shows that Jamaica recorded a score of 76.34 per cent in the areas of foundations of wellbeing; 69.23 per cent for basic human needs; and 65.6 per cent for opportunity.

The data also show that Jamaica excelled in the areas of access to basic knowledge with a score of 91.49 per cent; nutrition and basic medical care, 88.95 per cent; and personal rights 82.18 per cent.

Other notable areas where Jamaica recorded significant scores include water and sanitation, 79.46 per cent; health and wellness, 77.23 per cent; personal freedom and choice, 75.08 per cent; shelter, 70.28 per cent; tolerance and inclusion, 59.9 per cent; and ecosystem sustainability, 54.58 per cent.

The report indicates that the country  scored below 50 per cent in only two areas – advanced education, 45.25 per cent; and personal safety, 38.22 per cent.

Summarising the findings, the SPI suggests that Jamaica has “the greatest opportunity to improve in the area of human wellbeing by focusing more on personal safety.”

It further advises that the country would also benefit significantly from “greater investment in ecosystem sustainability” and cites access to advanced education as a key area for improvement.

The Social Progress Index offers a framework for measuring the multiple dimensions of social progress, benchmarking success, and catalysing human wellbeing.

The Social Progress Imperative, which includes the Social Progress Network (SPN) and Index, was incorporated as a non-profit organisation in the US in 2012. This year’s publication of the SPI marks the second occasion on which this activity is being undertaken.

The original idea for the Social Progress Index was conceived within the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Counsel on Philanthropy and Social Investing, chaired by the Economist’s New York Bureau Chief, Matthew Bishop.