This paper develops a framework that uses fuzzy-set theory to measure human well-being. Fuzzy sets allow for gradual transition from one state to another while also allowing one to incorporate rules and goals, and hence are more appropriate for measuring outcomes that are ambiguous. Such ambiguity is an inherent characteristic of cross-country achieved well-being assessments. This framework is used to provide a fuzzy representation of the well known Human Development Index (HDI) and its three components. Fuzzy HDI estimates for 14 Pacific Asian countries are provided and compared with non-fuzzy estimates. Quite large differences in rankings emerge. The paper concludes by suggesting that fuzzy measures should be used more widely to measure achieved well-being outcomes.
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