India’s Ease of Living Index city rankings more about data than performance
Ease of Living Indexreleased on Monday says more about the scarcity of datarather than the poor performance of cities.
- Some cities scored a zero on certain parameters because there was no data collected at that level, to begin with.
- Therefore, the data-driven approach of the Ease of Living index is an impetus for
accountabilityand optimal resource allocation.
A lot of the cities on the list, including the national capital of New
The lack of data doesn’t necessarily mean the absence thereof, but inefficiencies in the sharing of information. And, neither does it necessarily imply poor performance.
But the shift in policy making to a data-driven approach is a forward-looking, albeit a little late to the party, solution.
The index measured the ease of living in different cities along four parameters, namely - governance, social indicators, economic indicators and physical infrastructure. These four parameters are further divided into 78 indicators spread along a 100-point scale.
The list was led by the Maharashtrian cities of Pune, Navi Mumbai and Greater Mumbai while the cities of Patna and Rampur were at the bottom.
The low scores of a lot of cities, especially ones that attained a zero in certain categories, doesn’t mean that those services are absent from the city. A score of zero more likely implies that the respective authorities didn’t provide the data that was required.
In certain cases, there was no data to pass on because cities themselves are starved of data. For instance, public authorities don’t always have the data from private hospitals.
Rather than look at this year’s list as an indicator of ‘which city is better?’, it should be looked at as an accountability reminder to cities. It’s only through