Applied Research in Quality of Life

, Volume 13, Issue 1, pp 1–19 | Cite as

A Synthetic Indicator of Progress Towards the Millennium Development Goals 2, 3 and 4 in the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) of Asia

  • José Antonio Rodríguez Martín
  • José María Martín Martín
  • Juan de Dios Jiménez Aguilera


The aim of this article is to measure progress towards the United Nations’ (UN’s) Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) 2, 3 and 4 in Asia’s least developed countries (LDCs) by studying a group of countries that suffer particularly intensely from poverty. To achieve this goal, we use Pena’s distance method (DP2) to compose a synthetic indicator of the variables of MDG levels for MDGs 2, 3 and 4 in Asia’s LDCs through territorial classification of the DP2 for 2013, the last year for which data are available. The index also permits study of the impact of each variable individually to determine countries’ disparities in the variables associated with three of the MDGs. This analysis is particularly useful for the post-2015 agenda in a scenario such as Asia’s LDCs, which are beset by profound social and economic inequalities.


LDCs of Asia Millennium development goals Pena’s distance method Post-2015 development agenda United Nations 

JEL classification

F53 H51 H52 R11 



J.A.R. Martín gratefully acknowledges the financial support provided by the following institutions: Government of Spain (reference: ECO2013-44879-R), the Government of Andalusia (SEJ-393) and the European Regional Development Fund from the program to strengthen R&D&I capabilities.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht and The International Society for Quality-of-Life Studies (ISQOLS) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • José Antonio Rodríguez Martín
    • 1
    • 3
  • José María Martín Martín
    • 2
  • Juan de Dios Jiménez Aguilera
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Applied EconomicsUniversity of GranadaGranadaSpain
  2. 2.Faculty of Law, Social Sciences and Humanities, Business AreaInternational University of La RiojaLa RiojaSpain
  3. 3.Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y EmpresarialesGranadaSpain

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