Human Development Index as an adjustment coefficient for Safety Performance Benchmarking

The Human Development Index (HDI) gives you a very generalistic idea of how a country is reted among others in terms of basic human needs such as the expentancy of a long and healthy life at birth, the level of knowlegde and education as an average, and the level of decent living standard. The Index is the result of the geometric mean of three above mentioned dimensions.

So, what does it mean for a health and safety pro and how can it be used? Since I have not seen any research about the subject, the below approach is basicly my ideas of using this valuable data set as an adjustment coefficient for Safety benchmarking of similar organisations working in different countries.

As many of you know, the easiest way to compare two different entity is by evaluating them through an evaluation process and giving them a numerical value. The numerical evaluation is not always the most realistic evaluation but when the parameters to be looked for is set right, it gives a “close to real” idea of how well an organisation is performing. In most of the cases, the lagging or leading key parameters are choosen as the parameters among with on site observations and deep system and documentation reviews. The results of the compliency levels are entered as an input and you receive a final score.

Since the culture, the way the business is being done, the mentality, climate, geographical conditions, the way to manage, and expectations differ in each country or entity, it is very hard and unfair to set one evaluation criteria that will serve globally. To give an example, lets say that we are evaluating 3 different entities in different parts of the world that are producing the exact same product with somehow similar technology and manpower. One entity is located in the Europe, one is in the Central Africa and one is in the Middle East. Let`s also assume that we are using a percentage based scoring system and the 3 entities received scores of 78%, 58% and 54%. The success criteria is set as 60% globally, so according to the facts at hand, we can say that the Europian entity is successfull whereas the two other companies are failed to success. What if we can put out an adjustment coefficient to the success criteria which acts as a normaliser?

Since it is very hard to find an objective, global and respected criteria, the best option I can come up with is to use HDI as  an adjustment coefficient and use it to apply it to the evaluation criteria.

If we continue over our above example, the average world HDI index for 2015 is 0.717. The Europian and Central Asian average is 0,756, Arab States average is 0,687, and Sub Saharan African average is 0,523. In this example, the evaluation criteria for the Europian entity will be %60*(0,756/0,717)=%63,3, the Middle East entity criteria will be 57,5%, and African entity criteria will be 43,77%. According the normalisation coefficient addition to the equation, all entities are becoming successful since the evaluation criteria is adjusted.

Since it is a general example, I used the reigonal criteria but when actual data is used, country statistics can also be used and since the historical data and HDI scores are existing, this normalisation process can be used in the benchmarking of the historical performance inputs of a single entity.

Please do give your feedbacks and tell me what you think!

2 thoughts on “Human Development Index as an adjustment coefficient for Safety Performance Benchmarking”

  1. Dear Serhat,

    Very nicely written article.
    In my opionion same can be used to measure safety maturity index of different plants operating in different continents.


    Haider Ali


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