Achieving which target helps a country not being LDC?

“2015 is a milestone year. We will complete the Millennium Development Goals. We are forging a bold vision for sustainable development, including a set of sustainable development goals. And we are aiming for a new, universal climate agreement.”

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon


In 2000, 189 United Nations member states(193 currently) and at least 23 international organizations discussed together and established the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), a framework of eight goals reshaping decision-making in developed and developing countries. Each goal includes several specific targets.

A least developed country (LDC) is a country that, according to the United Nations, exhibits the lowest indicators of socioeconomic development, with the lowest Human Development Index ratings of all countries in the world.[Wikipedia] Since this classification has been put forward, four countries graduated to developing country.

The goal of analyzing MDG data is to help LDC find what should they improve to graduate from LDC via connecting targets of MDGs with LDC classification.

With standardization, principal component analysis and linear regression, the classification model is:

Country is LDC or not =
0.0200 * (Standardization of Target 1.A: Halve, between 1990 and 2015, the proportion of people whose income is less than one dollar a day)
+ 0.0317 * (Standardization of Target 1.C: Halve, between 1990 and 2015, the proportion of people who suffer from hunger)
- 0.0496 * (Standardization of Target 2.A: Ensure that, by 2015, children everywhere, boys and girls alike, will be able to complete a full course of primary schooling)
- 0.0072 * (Standardization of Target 3.A: Eliminate gender disparity in primary and secondary education, preferably by 2005, and in all levels of education no later than 2015)
+ 0.0511 * (Standardization of Target 4.A: Reduce by two-thirds, between 1990 and 2015, the under-five mortality rate)
+ 0.0543 * (Standardization of Target 5.A: Reduce by three quarters, between 1990 and 2015, the maternal mortality ratio)
+ 0.0004 * (Standardization of Target 6.A: Have halted by 2015 and begun to reverse the spread of HIV/AIDS)
+ 0.0463 * (Standardization of Target 6.C: Have halted by 2015 and begun to reverse the incidence of malaria and other major diseases)
- 0.0094 * (Standardization of Target 7.A: Integrate the principles of sustainable development into country policies and programmes and reverse the loss of environmental resources)
- 0.0534 * (Standardization of Target 7.C: Halve, by 2015, the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation)
- 0.0126 * (Standardization of Target 7.D: By 2020, to have achieved a significant improvement in the lives of at least 100 million slum dwellers)
+ 0.0130 * (Standardization of Target 8.A: Develop further an open, rule-based, predictable, non-discriminatory trading and financial system)
+ 0.0138 * (Standardization of Target 8.B: Address the special needs of the least developed countries)
- 0.0006 * (Standardization of Target 8.C: Address the special needs of landlocked countries and small island developing States)
+ 0.0153 * (Standardization of Target 8.D: Deal comprehensively with the debt problems of developing countries through national and international measures in order to make debt sustainable in the long term)
+ 0.0393 * (Standardization of Target 1.B: Achieve full and productive employment and decent work for all, including women and young people)
- 0.0103 * (Standardization of Target 8.F: In cooperation with the private sector, make available the benefits of new technologies, especially information and communications)
- 0.0302 * (Standardization of Target 5.B: Achieve, by 2015, universal access to reproductive health)
- 0.0430 * (Standardization of Target 6.B: Achieve, by 2010, universal access to treatment for HIV/AIDS for all those who need it)
+ 0.0137 * (Standardization of Target 7.B: Reduce biodiversity loss, achieving, by 2010, a significant reduction in the rate of loss)
- 0.0069 * (Standardization of Number of Population)

This model shows that Target 5.A: Reduce by three quarters, between 1990 and 2015, the maternal mortality ratio and Target 7.C: Halve, by 2015, the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation are more important that other target in helping a LDC to become developing country.

The left graph shows the result of this classification model. The white star is the real LDC category; the yellow star is the predicted LDC category. The left the star is, the less likely the country is LDC.

Statistical Analysis

I use 20 targets and number of population in 2012 as independent variables. The right table shows that the variables range variously, so we need standardize them firstly.
Descriptive Analysis

The Pearson Correlation Coefficients table indicates that some variables relates with each other. I use principle component analysis to reduce dimension and avoid collinear.
R Square

The cumulative eigenvalues presents that 6 principle components (Prin1 - Prin6) can explain 72.91 percent of variance. Therefore, I only use Prin1 - Prin6 in following linear regression.
PCA

Only Prin1 - Prin4 are selected in stepwise linear regression. The p value is less than 0.05, which is statistically significant. The model is accepted.
Linear Regression

In the left graph, the distance between star center and each angle presents the value of each principle component as shown in the right graph.
Explaination of Star

The following interactive graph shows distribution of LDC and non-LDC on Prin1 - Prin4.