Improving Living Standards in Nigeria through Human Development

Supplementary Files



Human development
Living standards


Gross National Product (GDP) or Gross National Income (GNI) computation upon which the measurement of per capita income in Nigeria is predicated does not disclose how national income is distributed among the population, and neither does it factor in deficiencies in basic necessities of life that are not determined by the purchasing power of individual incomes. Therefore, income per capita figures are not a true measure of the standard of living in Nigeria. Against this background, I contend that rather than relying on the conventional income per capita estimates to measure living standards, Nigeria government should focus on providing adequately essential ingredients of human development such as good health care, quality education, housing, and healthy environment. This is because they are indispensable for the building of human capabilities and realization of human potentialities which are central to improvement in living standards. I conclude therefore that building human capabilities through investment in health care, education, and basic infrastructures are of central importance in the improvement of living standards in Nigeria.