Human Capital is a collection of expertise, behaviors, social and personality characteristics, including imagination, reflected in the capacity to conduct work in order to produce economic benefit.
(i) People as resource is a way of referring to a country’s working people, in terms of their existing productive skills and abilities.
(ii) When the existing ‘human resource’ is further developed by becoming more educated and healthy, we call it human capital formation. It adds to the productive power of the country.
(iii) Investment in human capital (through education, training, medical care) yields a investment in physical capital.
(iv) Human capital is in one way superior to other resources like land and physical capital because human resource can make use of land and capital.
(v) Land and capital cannot become useful on their own.
(vi) For many decades in India, a large population has been considered a liability rather than an asset.
(vii) A large population can be turned into a productive asset by investment in human capital i.e., by spending resources on education and health for all.
(viii) Educated parents invest in the education of their children.
(ix) They are also conscious of proper nutrition and hygiene.
(x) As a result of the investment in children, a virtuous cycle is created.
(xi) A vicious cycle may be created by disadvantaged parents who, themselves being uneducated keep their children in similarly disadvantaged state.
Economic Activities by Men and Women
Various economic activities have been classified into 3 sectors i.e., primary, secondary and tertiary.
(i) Primary Sector Primary sector includes agriculture forestry, animal husbandry, fishing, poultry farming and mining.
(ii) Secondary Sector Manufacturing and construction are included in the secondary sector.
(iii) Tertiary Sector Trade, transport, communication, banking, education health, tourism services, insurance etc are included in the tertiary sector.
Defining Economic Activities Economic activities also called market activities are those activities in which income is got in return for the work done.
(i) Market Activities These involve remuneration to anyone who performs the activity, i.e., activity performed for pay or profit.
These include production of goods and services and also includes government service.
(ii) Non Market Activities Non market activities production for self consumption. These can be consumption and processing of primary products and own account production of fixed assets.
Division of Labour Between Men and Women
(i) Due to historical and cultural reasons, there is a division of labour between men and women in the family.
(ii) Women generally look after domestic work and men work in the fields. The women who work in the homes are not paid anything, while the men who work outside the homes
(iii) Women get paid for their work only when they enter the labour market.
(iv) The earnings of women are determined on the basis of skill and education.
(v) Education and skill are the major determinants of the earning of any individual in the market.
(vi) Women have very less education and low skill formation and are paid lower compared to men.
Quality of Population
(i) The quality of population depends upon the literacy rate ,health and skill formation.
(ii) Health of a person is indicated by life expectancy.
(iii) The quality of the population decides the growth rate of the country.
(iv) Illiterate and unhealthy population are a liability for the country.
(a) Education contributes towards the growth of society. It enhances the national income, cultural richness and the efficiency of governance; it helps to get jobs and increase
(b) Literacy rates have increased from 18% in 1951 to 65% in 2001.
(c) Literacy among males is nearly 50% higher than females and is about 50% higher in urban areas compared to rural areas.
(ii) Steps to Spread Education
(a) Sarva Siksha Abhiyan is a significant step towards providing elementary education to all children in the age group of 6 to 14 years by 2010.
(b) Midday Meal scheme has been implemented in schools to encourage attendance and retention of children and improve their nutritional status.
(c) The 10th Plan aimed to increase the enrollment in higher education of the 18 to 23 years age group.
(d) The 10th plan also focuses on distance education and convergence of formal, non-formal distance and IT education institutions.
(i) The health of a person helps him to realise his potential and the ability to fight illness.
(ii) An unhealthy person becomes a liability for an organisation. Health is an indispensable basis for realising one’s well being.
(iii) The National Health Policy too, aims at improving the accessibility of health care, family welfare and nutritional services especially for the weaker and the underprivileged sections of society.
It is said to exist when people who are willing to work at the going wages cannot find jobs.
(a) Seasonal unemployment
Seasonal unemployment happens when people are not able to find jobs during some months of the year due to seasonal nature of the work.
(b) Disguised Unemployment :
• In the case of disguised unemployment, people appear to be employed but they are not working to their full potential.
• A family of 8 persons are working on a farm whereas the work requires the service of 5 people only. The remaining 3 persons are extra though they are working on the farm
They are said to be disguisedly unemployed.
(c) Educated Unemployment In case of urban areas educated unemployment has become a common feature.
The unemployment of graduates and post-graduates has increased faster than among matriculates.
Negative Effects/Impact of Unemployment
(i) Unemployment leads to wastage of manpower resource.
(ii) People who are an asset for the country turn into a liability.
(iii) There is a feeling of helplessness and despair among the youth.
(iv) People do not have enough money to support their family.
(v) The dependence of the unemployed on the working population increases.
(vi) The quality of life of an individual as well as the society is negatively affected.
(vii) In conditions of bare subsistence there is a general decline in health status and increased dropouts from school.
(viii) Unemployment has detrimental impact on the overall growth of an economy.
Sectors and Unemployment
(i) Agriculture is the most labour absorbing sector of the economy.
(ii) In the secondary sector small scale manufacturing is the most labour absorbing.
(iii) In the tertiary sector various new services are now appearing like biotechnology and IT services (call centres).
(iv) Some of the surplus labour in agriculture has moved to either the secondary or the tertiary sector.