This National Human Development Report (National HDR) puts the well-being of young people in Timor-Leste at the centre of the policy agenda. Why youth? Timor-Leste has one of the youngest populations in the Asia and Pacific region, with a median age of 17.4 years. This makes Timor-Leste the 15th youngest in the world, behind only Afghanistan and a group of African nations.

The population below age 35 accounts for 74 percent of the total population. Hence, this report responds to the development aspirations of the youth of Timor-Leste, the drivers of the nation’s future development.

Why well-being? Economists are increasingly recognizing that a better quality of life is the goal of development, while economic prosperity is a means to this goal. Poverty and human well-being are closely related, and multidimensional poverty is another way of describing failures in well-being. A well-being approach is not limited to economic considerations. It provides a much more holistic perspective on policy by acknowledging that development outcomes are a result of a confluence of the socio-economic, political, cultural and environmental factors shaped by historical contexts.

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