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Design and implementation of composite indicators: A proposal for the field of sustainability

International economics

Senior Researcher : Patrizia Pérez Asurmendi

Research Centre or Institution : Universidad Complutense de Madrid


The accepted project established four main goals:



  1. To design a composite indicator based on the Society Sustainable Index (SSI) by means of the Choquet Integral.
    An index based on the Choquet Integral has been developed and applied to the data used in the SSI. In such a new index, the weight assigned to each SSI indicator considers possible interactions among different indicators through the Pearson correlation coefficient. Furthermore, each weight represents the true value of the contribution of each indicator in the composite index, through the Shapley Value. The results obtained are recorded in a paper that is being written at present.
  2. To extend the proposal to other indicators in the framework of the economy and to the multicriteria decision methods.
    A state-of-the-art review has been carried out in both areas, although possible extensions have not yet been proposed.
  3. To implement and disseminate the proposed design of indicators through the Shiny application from R-Studio.
    The R code necessary for the construction of the new index has been written and the proposed composite index has been obtained. Currently, the work is being developed in two areas: the generalization of the code to enable its usage with other composite indices, and its implementation within the Shiny application for use by other researchers. 
  4. To extend the proposal to consider more general functions than the Pearson correlation coefficient, in order to represent interrelations between indicators.
    The Spearman coefficient is being considered as an alternative to the Pearson linear correlation coefficient. The former allows for the quantification of monotonic relationships among indices, given that such indicators can be considered ordinal variables. Furthermore, given the Spearman coefficient features, it can be included in the developed design. This allows for the consideration of non-linear interrelations among the indicators that make up the composite index.
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