Israel Ranks High On Development Index
The most recent United Nations "Human Development Index" ranks Israel among the 45 countries considered to have "high human development." Overall, Israel ranks 23rd out of 174 countries (Canada is ranked first, Norway second and the U.S. third). This index is considered more comprehensive than the standard measure of a nation's wealth, the Gross Domestic Product because it also includes factors such as population growth, infant mortality, life expectancy, and the quality of education and health services.
On the life expectancy scale, for example, Israel ranked fourth (higher than the U.S.) and was a surprising fifth in population growth (2.4% annually, the highest of all developed countries).
The top 25 countries in the human development index:
Sources: United Nations Development Programme, "Human Development Report 1999" and Israel Government Press Office