Romania is ranked 45 out of 149 countries, being surpassed by all the other EU member states, according to the 2019 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. Thus, Romania falls one position compared to last year’s edition and is, according to the registered score, among the countries in the third category in the ranking, after Argentina, Bulgaria and Mauritius.
The Social Progress Index (SPI) measures the quality of life and social wellbeing of citizens from 149 countries, based on the analysis of three main dimensions. The methodology consists of assigning a score for basic needs category items – basic food and medical care, water and sanitation, shelter and personal safety -, for wellbeing category items – access to basic knowledge, access to communications and information, health and wellness, environment 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.
“Despite the stable economic growth, among the biggest in Europe, the increasing purchasing power and the historical low of unemployment rate, Romania has registered a slight decrease in the quality of life and in social wellbeing over the last year. With modest scores for a series of chapters such as health, access to basic education, water and sanitation, it is clear that, in order to generate social progress, public resources should be redirected towards investments capable of generating economic development and better living standards,” said Alexandru Reff, Country Managing Partner, Deloitte Romania and Moldova.
The analysis dedicated to Romania in the study highlights our country’s weaknesses and strengths compared to 15 other states that have a similar GDP per capita. The items that ranked lowest for Romania are water and sanitation services (83rd place), health and wellness (74th place) and access to basic education (73rd place). The items that ranked best for our country are personal safety (36th place), environmental quality (40th place), basic food and medical care (47th place), personal rights (48th place).
Norway remains in the leading position
- In 2019, Norway, Denmark and Switzerland occupy the first places in the ranking, while Chad, South Sudan and Central African Republic are on the last positions.
- The EU member states, except 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 (21), followed by the Czech Republic (24), Estonia (25), Lithuania (32), Poland (33), Slovakia (35), Latvia (36), Croatia (38), Hungary (39), Bulgaria (43) and Romania (45).
Overview of index changes in time
137 out of the 149 countries included in the analysis experienced an improvement in the quality of life and social wellbeing during 2014-2019, although there is no unitary evolution of the 12 items assessed.
- The global average on social progress increased from 62.16 out of 100 in 2014, to 64.47 in 2019.
- From 2014 until now, the items that have improved globally are the access to information and communications, access to advanced education, water and sanitation, shelter, nutrition and basic medical services, environmental quality, personal freedom and choices, and health and wellness.
- The overall level of personal rights decreased by 4.17 points over the six analyzed years, following its negative evolution in 77 countries out of the 149 in the ranking.
- Social inclusion, access to basic knowledge and personal safety are among the most stable items.
- The countries with the largest decline in the social progress index include the United States, Nicaragua, South Sudan and Brazil.