UNDP Sri Lanka Wins 2016 Awards for Excellence in Human Development Reporting

Dec 8, 2016

Photo Credits: Freya Morales/UNDP

The awardees are the teams behind the National Human Development Reports from Chile (2012), Montenegro (2013), Sri Lanka (2014) and Uganda (2015).

The Human Development Report Office (HDRO) announced today the four winners of the 2016 Awards for Excellence in Human Development Reporting for national and regional reports in an event at the United Nation Headquarters in New York. United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Goodwill Ambassador, HRH Crown Prince Haakon of Norway and UNDP Administrator, Helen Clark joined HDRO Director, Selim Jahan, to present the awards.


An evaluation panel considered 29 submissions from among 50 national and regional human development reports published since 2012. The winning reports are:


  • Chile 2012 Human Development Report (HDR) ‘Subjective Wellbeing: The Challenges of Rethinking Development’,
  • Montenegro 2013 HDR ‘People are the real wealth of the country’. How rich is Montenegro?’,
  • Sri Lanka 2014 HDR ‘Youth and Development: Towards a More Inclusive Future’,
  • Uganda 2015 HDR ‘Unlocking the Development Potential of Northern Uganda’.


The four awardees represent outstanding examples of how human development report teams can engage with communities, organizations and institutions to develop the reports, and communicate findings in ways to influence political debate in countries.


Speaking at the event, Helen Clark said “Reports should reflect the views of many stakeholders. One cannot report accurately on the hopes and aspirations of women, youth, the poor, or any other grouping in society without engaging fully with them. It is perhaps this characteristic more than any other which transforms a report on development into a human development report.”


“Human Development Reports place an emphasis on understanding people’s lives and their aspirations.  And they recognize that development is complex, interlinked and multi-faceted. These two tenets have, together, been instrumental in explaining why human development thinking has improved understanding, and policy making, in many countries.” added HRH Crown Prince Haakon of Norway.


This was the seventh round of human development reporting awards since they began in 2000, and covered reports published from June 2012 through June 2016.


“National Human Development Reports have always informed Global Human Development Reports and their analysis and recommendations can now play an important role in the dialogue around the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These reports are the result of committed efforts to engage with a broad range of stakeholders and help understand disparities within a society,” said Selim Jahan.


The evaluation panel also commended submissions regarding the following human development reports: Ethiopia (2015), Kosovo (2014), Mongolia (2016) and Vietnam (2016), Asia and the Pacific (2016), Latin America and the Caribbean (2016) and the Western Balkans (2016).


Social media: #AwardsHDR




Chile 2012 HDR ‘Subjective Wellbeing: The Challenges of Rethinking Development’

This report uses measures of subjective wellbeing (in particular “happiness”) to better understand “what ultimately matters” when striving for development. The report contributed to frame this discussion within Chilean society and it still draws attention four years after its publication. The findings of this report are being used by Chile’s Ministry of Education in the discussion of a new national school curriculum and the Ministry of Social Development has measured life satisfaction in line with its recommendations.


Montenegro 2013 HDR ‘People are the real wealth of the country’. How rich is Montenegro?’

This report assesses the country’s progress in creating and using human capital from a human development perspective. It represents an outstanding example of how citizens can engage in discussing major development issues: the report led to a TV show running for seven months, which involved a cross section of citizens discussing key human development questions such as equality between men and women. Beyond the public debate, the report has been used in policy-making including informing the EU accession policy documents and Montenegro’s National Employment Strategy.


Sri Lanka 2014 HDR ‘Youth and Development: Towards a More Inclusive Future’

This report looks at how to engage young people in conversations about development. It is an excellent example of how to give people a voice to shape their own future. Young people were closely involved in the report’s production and in taking the recommendations forward. It led to Sri Lanka’s first blog on youth and development, to which dozens of young Sri Lankans now contribute and is now published in a national newspaper. Two years after its launch, the findings of these reports are informing many discussions and policy-making processes which range from the draft of a youth policy action plan through a university diploma in youth development.


Uganda 2015 HDR ‘Unlocking the Development Potential of Northern Uganda’

This report is about unlocking the development potential of the northern part of the country. The report has generated baseline data on the region and its human development challenges. And it has had a tangible impact, already shaping government and development partners’ policies and programming. The report has also influenced the National Poverty Reduction Strategy for the region.




The mission of the Human Development Report Office (HDRO) is to advance human development. The office works towards this goal through writing and research, data analysis and presentation, support to national and regional analysis, and advocacy work. More information http://hdr.undp.org


UNDP partners with people at all levels of society to help build nations that can withstand crisis, and drive and sustain the kind of growth that improves the quality of life for everyone. On the ground in more than 170 countries and territories, we offer global perspective and local insight to help empower lives and build resilient nations.


MEDIA CONTACTS: Anna Ortubia / anna.ortubia@undp.org / +1 212 906 5964

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