Copula-based measurement of dependence between dimensions of well-beingCopula-based measurement of dependence between dimensions of well-being
Faculty of Social Sciences. Sociology
Herman Deleeck Centre for Social Policy
York :The University of York, 2009[*]2009
HEDG working paper ; 09/32
Well-being consists of many dimensions such as income, health and education. A society exhibits greater dependence between its dimensions of well-being when the positions of the individuals in the di¤erent dimensions are more aligned or corre- lated. Di¤erences in dependence may lead to very di¤erent societies, even when the dimension-wise distributions are identical. I propose to use a copula-based frame- work to order societies with respect to their dependence. A class of measures of dependence is derived to which the multidimensional rank correlation coe¢ cient be- longs. I illustrate the usefulness of the approach by showing that Russian dependence between three dimensions of well-being has increased signi…cantly between 1995 and 2003. Unfortunately, the aspect of dependence is missed by all composite well-being measures based on dimension-speci…c summary statistics such as the popular Human Development Index (HDI).