Human and Military Development: A Paradox Analyzed in the Context of India

Human and Military Development: A Paradox Analyzed in the Context of India

Sayantani Roy Choudhury (Amity University, India)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-4778-5.ch025

Abstract

India is an upcoming superpower of the world. The most important logic behind this is the position of India in the power index ranking. The finalized ranking of GFP index relies on over 50 factors to determine a given nation's power index score. India stood at fourth position among 131 countries all over the world. India is standing only behind USA, Russia, and China. Countries like UK, Japan, and Germany are behind India. To analyze India's position, the chapter goes through finding the factors behind the calculation of this index. The few components are total populations, available manpower fit for service, and those reaching military age annually. India could pull up its ranking in this index with the help of its population strength. But with respect to HDI, it reveals that India is standing at 131st position out of 188 nations. It means, India's rank is improved in GFP power index due to its population, whose improvement ranking is very poor. It seems to be a paradoxical situation. Through this chapter, the authors try to explain this paradox.
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Introduction

Military power begins with the people and equipment used to conduct war: the weapons, tanks, ships, airplanes, and supporting tools such as communication systems that make it possible either for one group to impose its will on another or to prevent such an outcome from happening.Another key element is the military’s capacity to conduct operations: how many of the right tools—people, tanks, planes, or ships—it has. One might have the right tools and know how to use them effectively but not have enough to win. Therefore, it is very complicated to calculate Military power index. One of the most used indexes of military power is Global Firepower Index.

The finalized Global Firepower ranking relies on over 50 factors to determine a given nation's PowerIndex ('PwrIndx') score. The formula allows smaller, though more technologically-advanced, nations to compete with larger, lesser-developed ones. Modifiers (in the form of bonuses and penalties) are added to further refine the list. Some items to observe in regards to the finalized ranking:

  • Ranking does not simply rely on the total number of weapons available to any one country but rather focuses on weapon diversity within the number totals to provide a better balance of firepower available (i.e. fielding 100 minesweepers does not equal the strategic and tactical value of fielding 10 aircraft carriers).

  • Nuclear stockpiles are not taken into account but recognized / suspected nuclear powers receive a bonus.

  • Geographical factors, logistical flexibility, natural resources and local industry influence the final ranking.

  • Available manpower is a key consideration; nations with large populations tend to rank higher.

  • Land-locked nations are not penalized for lack of a navy; naval powers are penalized for lack of diversity in available assets.

  • NATO allies receive a slight bonus due to the theoretical sharing of resources.

  • Current political / military leadership is not taken into account.

For 2017 there are a total of 131 countries included in the Global Fire Power database.

Following are the factors taken into consideration to calculate GFP Index:

Key Terms in this Chapter

Military Expenditure: A military budget (or military expenditure), also known as a defense budget, is the amount of financial resources dedicated by a nation to raising and maintaining an armed forces or other methods essential for defense purposes.

Education: The act or process of imparting or acquiring general knowledge, developing the powers of reasoning and judgment, and generally of preparing oneself or others intellectually for mature life.

Human Development: Human development is defined as the process of enlarging people's freedoms and opportunities and improving their well-being. Human development is about the real freedom ordinary people have to decide who to be, what to do, and how to live.

Economic Growth: Economic growth is an increase in the capacity of an economy to produce goods and services, compared from one period of time to another. It can be measured in nominal or real terms, the latter of which is adjusted for inflation. Traditionally, aggregate economic growth is measured in terms of gross national product (GNP) or gross domestic product (GDP), although alternative metrics are sometimes used.

Global Firepower Index: Global firepower ranking relies on over 50 factors to determine a given nation's power index (PwrIndx) score. The formula allows smaller, though more technologically-advanced, nations to compete with larger, lesser-developed ones.

Human Development Index: HDI was created to emphasize that people and their capabilities should be the ultimate criteria for assessing the development of a country, not economic growth alone.

Defense Spending: Money spent by a government to provide its military with weapons, equipment, and soldiers.

Health: State of complete physical, mental, and social wellbeing, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. Health is a dynamic condition resulting from a body's constant adjustment and adaptation in response to stresses and changes in the environment for maintaining an inner equilibrium called homeostasis.

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