Data Visualization

Blog of the Data Visualization & Communication Course at OSB-AUB

This is my favorite part about analytics: Taking boring flat data and bringing it to life through visualization” John Tukey

Vietnam’s Economic Resurgence: Navigating Challenges to Emerge Stronger in 2022

Vietnam’s Economic Resurgence: Navigating Challenges to Emerge Stronger in 2022

Charting Progress: Vietnam’s GDP, Trade, and Industrial Growth (2010-2022)

The years 2010 to 2022 have seen stability and expansion in Vietnam’s economy. The visual shows the economic dynamics of the nation over a ten-year period, highlighting the GDP growth rate annually, which highlights the country’s resilience in the face of regional and international difficulties. Additionally, it draws attention to the consistent contribution of trade to GDP, which reflects Vietnam’s growing influence on the international scene. The graph also shows the manufacturing and industrial sectors’ expanding and considerable influence on the economy, indicating a move toward modernization and industrialization. Vietnam’s strategic economic policies and strong reactivity to shifting economic conditions are demonstrated by this data narrative.

Established policies like the Doi Moi economic reform, which laid the foundation for Vietnam’s market-oriented strategy, supported the country’s economic resilience in the face of global problems in 2020. Furthermore, during a turbulent time, Vietnam’s commerce was supported by the government’s strategic application of free trade agreements, such as the EU-Vietnam Free commerce Agreement (EVFTA) and the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). During the epidemic, this strategy and programs like the National Foreign Direct Investment Strategy for 2021–2030 supported growth and cushioned the economy. Following the COVID-19 epidemic, Vietnam’s National Assembly passed Resolution 43 in 2022, which was a comprehensive package meant to revive the country’s economy. To lessen the burden on businesses, specific measures included a 2% reduction in VAT and CIT deductions. A significant budget, almost US$15 billion, was set aside for modernization, infrastructure development, and healthcare advancements. In addition, the government offered favorable loans to support company recovery together with social security subsidies for job creation and training. These focused monetary and fiscal policies were essential in launching Vietnam’s economy’s post-pandemic recovery. The Vietnam Briefing addresses the effects and extent of these policies in detail.

Seizing the Momentum: Vietnam’s Path Forward
In times of global unpredictability, Vietnam’s resilience and economic expansion bear witness not just to its excellent policymaking but also to the unwavering dedication of its people and leadership. One issue still stands as we consider this dynamic economy’s amazing journey: how can the international community use Vietnam’s achievements as a model to strengthen its own economy? The search of creativity and teamwork together holds the key to the solution. Using Vietnam’s experience as a model, let’s consider how we may use these ideas to face our own issues with the same determination and bravery.

Empowering Women: A Key to Addressing Domestic Violence and Educational Challenges

Empowering Women: A Key to Addressing Domestic Violence and Educational Challenges


In recent years, a growing body of research has begun to highlight the crucial role that women’s empowerment plays in addressing some of the most pressing social issues of our time. Among these are the twin challenges of domestic violence and the high dropout rates among female adolescents. This article delves into the latest findings on how enhancing women’s education and career opportunities can lead to healthier, more equitable societies.

The Link Between Education, Career Achievement, and Domestic Violence

A recent analysis of data has shed light on a compelling connection: women’s educational backgrounds significantly influence their attitudes towards domestic violence and their career achievements. In countries where women achieve higher career success, there are noticeable societal benefits. These include lower rates of female adolescents dropping out of school and a reduced tolerance for domestic violence. This finding underscores the transformative power of education and career empowerment in shaping societal norms and health outcomes.

Impact of Female Career Achievement on Society

Statistics reveal an encouraging trend. Countries with higher rates of female career achievement experience not only reduced domestic violence tolerance but also lower dropout rates among female adolescents. This correlation points to the broader societal benefits of empowering women through education and professional opportunities. It’s not just about individual success; it’s about creating a more equitable and just society.

Potential Solutions

To capitalize on these findings, a concerted effort is needed to enhance educational opportunities for women and promote their advancement in the workforce. This could involve:

  • 1. Investing in Policies: Supportive policies that encourage women’s educational advancement and career achievement are crucial. Such policies could address both the educational outcomes of female adolescents and societal attitudes toward domestic violence.
  • 2. Promoting Educational Opportunities: Organizations should actively promote educational opportunities for women, potentially through initiatives like scholarships. These scholarships could be specifically aimed at encouraging gender diversity in senior positions, thereby addressing the gap in women’s representation at higher organizational levels.
  • 3. Monitoring and Validation: It’s important to continuously monitor educational outcomes and societal attitudes to validate the effectiveness of these initiatives. If the positive correlation between women’s career achievements, education, and societal outcomes holds, it provides strong evidence in support of these approaches.


The findings from recent studies are clear: investing in women’s education is not just a matter of individual empowerment but a strategic approach to addressing multiple social issues. Expanding efforts that promote opportunities for women can improve both education and mental well-being, leading to healthier and more equitable societies. It’s a call to action for policymakers, educational institutions, and organizations to prioritize and invest in women’s empowerment as a transformative strategy for societal advancement.



Unveiling tourism patterns: A data-driven exploration of infrastructure impact

Unveiling tourism patterns: A data-driven exploration of infrastructure impact

The intricate relationship between infrastructure development and tourism in Lebanon is a multifaceted issue, with various components playing a crucial role in the country’s ability to attract and satisfy tourists. An in-depth analysis of this interplay reveals several key areas of focus:

Communication Infrastructure

Urban areas in Lebanon face challenges with communication infrastructure, such as limited broadband access and unreliable networks. This hinders effective communication and limits access to essential services, impacting the tourist experience significantly.


Electricity Supply

Reliable electricity is essential for sustaining urban environments and attracting tourists. Inconsistent power supply and frequent outages disrupt daily life and tourism-related services, making it hard for areas to attract and retain tourists.


Water and Sewage Management

Water quality issues are prevalent across various regions in Lebanon. Tourist destinations, in particular, require immediate interventions to address substandard water quality and inefficient sewage systems. Such inadequacies not only affect environmental quality but also influence tourists’ destination choices.



Public Transportation

The state of public transportation varies across different regions in Lebanon. While some areas like Mount Lebanon exhibit developed public transportation infrastructure, other regions lag behind. This uneven distribution affects the ease of movement for tourists and impacts their overall experience.


Tourism and Infrastructure Alignment

There is a noticeable disparity between regions with high tourism appeal and the adequacy of their infrastructure. For instance, areas like Mount Lebanon and Beqaa, despite having high tourism indexes, show mismatches in sewage management and electricity supply, indicating a need for a more balanced development approach.

Survey Insights

Surveys reveal that Batroun, Byblos, and Beirut are preferred tourist destinations, highlighting the need for focused developmental efforts in these areas. Issues such as road safety and the perception of travel safety significantly influence tourist decisions.


Strategic Recommendations

To foster sustainable tourism growth, Lebanon needs targeted infrastructure development, especially in key tourist hubs. This includes improving transportation, accommodation, and telecom connectivity.
Sustainable water management practices and the establishment of efficient water treatment plants are crucial for addressing water quality issues.
Upgrading sewage systems in tourist-heavy areas is vital to prevent environmental degradation.
Ensuring a reliable electricity supply, potentially through renewable energy sources and modernized power grids, is essential for supporting the needs of tourist establishments.
Developing an efficient and accessible public transportation network, particularly in regions with high touristic potential, can significantly enhance the tourist experience.

Data-Driven Decision Making

Continuing to use data analysis and surveys is key to informing policy and investment decisions. This approach ensures that resources are distributed where they are most needed and can have the greatest impact, ultimately enhancing Lebanon’s appeal as a premier tourist destination and fostering sustainable growth.

Embarking on the American Dream: Definitive Analysis to a Successful U.S. Visa Acquisition

Embarking on the American Dream: Definitive Analysis to a Successful U.S. Visa Acquisition

The United States of America (USA) is home to more international immigrants than any other country in the world. In fact, the USA has more international immigrants than Germany, Saudi Arabia, Russia and the United Kingdom combined. You, I, and hundreds of students reading this blog are in the midst of crafting our career paths, where many have the aspiration of finding their dream job or pursuing a PhD in the USA. When you reach this point, you start thinking about what company or university to apply to, and your first hope is to get accepted to the university or job you applied for. However, this acceptance would be pending your visa acceptance. This is the stage that many people find to be the most challenging: getting a visa to the US.

The American dream has been the focus of attention for many visa applicants; as they are seeking better work opportunities, liberty, democracy, and equality. However, behind this pursuit lies a complex factor that shapes the final status of the visa application, as applicants are not seen as equal in the eyes of USA visa employees. Many of an applicant’s uncontrollable demographic characteristics determine the acceptance probability of his application. For example, being from Micronesia gives a 100% rate of the visa being denied. In this blog post, controllable characteristics will be analyzed and visualized to showcase the optimal employee profile that is more likely to be granted a US visa. This blog post will focus on immigrant visas, with a specific emphasis on those related to employees. Using data driven analysis and exploration, the key influencers affecting the US visa acceptance will be explored, and recommendations will be given to solve the ongoing problems facing the US visa application acceptance. 

Unlocking Opportunities: Understanding U.S. Work Visas

In the following dashboard, you have the option to filter through various visualizations by selecting different case statuses, “refiled” or “non-refiled,” and application types. The initial visualization offers a quick overview of certification rates within the dataset, highlighting that a substantial number of applications, specifically 170,126, have received certification. In contrast, a smaller portion, only 22,912 applications, has been denied. These figures suggest an encouraging trend in the certification process, pointing towards a favorable environment for visa approvals. The positive trend observed in the dataset may have broader policy implications. It could suggest that existing visa policies or recent changes have contributed to a more favorable climate for applicants.

The second visualization delves into the refiled applications, showcasing that 36.23% of submissions have undergone the refile process, while the majority, 63.77%, have not been refiled. This insight could prompt further investigation into the reasons behind refiling and provide valuable information for refining application procedures.

In the third visualization, when visualizing the channels through which applications are submitted, it is evident that a vast majority, 98.4%, are completed online, while a smaller fraction, 1.6%, opts for mailing in their applications. This emphasizes the dominance of digital submissions and suggests an opportunity to optimize online processes. 

Three Key Requirements: The Foundation for Visa Success

The first visual below tracks the number of received visa applications over the years. Notably, there’s a growth trend from 2011 to 2015, peaking at 87,081 applications. However, the trend reverses in 2016, with a decline to 72,171 applications. This temporal analysis invites exploration into the factors influencing application fluctuations.

Highlighting sector-specific trends, the second visual indicates that the IT sector consistently holds the peak for all case statuses. This insight can guide resource allocation, policy adjustments, or sector-specific considerations to further streamline visa processing.

The third visualization focuses on the duration of visa decisions over time. It unveils a significant decrease from 2010, where decisions took 191.7 days on average, to 2016, where the duration plummeted to 96 days. This trend suggests an improvement in processing efficiency and responsiveness.

In this dashboard, the aim is to dig deeper within the dataset to draw further insights into the optimal applicant profile. 

The first bar chart showcases the top majors applying for a US visa, with computer science on top, followed by general engineering and computer engineering. This suggests a notable trend in the major choices amond individuals applying for US visas. The dominance of computer science – related majors suggests a high demand for individuals with expertise in technology and programming. The data implies that individuals with computer science and engineering backgrounds may have advantageous prospects in securing employment opportunities in the US.

The second bar chart showcases the companies applied to, with Cognizant Technology being on top, followed by Microsoft, Google and Intel. This information provides insights into the preferred employers for US visa applicants. The prevalence of applications to those technology giants indicates a substantial internet or demand in the technology and IT sectors. The data suggests that individuals seeking US visas often target employment opportunities with these prominent companies, possibly due to their global reputation, job offerings, or industry influence. For applicants, this informs their choices and strategies when seeking employment opportunities in the US. 

The line graph showcases the top 10 employer states, with California as the frontrunner with 33,903 applicants. Notably, California stands out as a technology hub, attracting the highest number of job seekers.

Based on the first radial bar chart, there is a visible pattern in the education level requirements for jobs. As indicated, a Master’s degree is the most commonly sought after qualification, followed by a Bachelor’s degree, and with “None” representing the third category. This information could have implications for individuals seeking employment visas: since the majority of job opportunities require a Master;s degree, prospective visa applicants can enhance their chances by acquiring this degree. Bachelor holders will also find opportunities, but with higher competition, while individuals without an educational background, or a doctorate, might have limited options. 

This second radial bar chart showcases the applicant’s education level, with a masters degree coming on top, followed by a bachelor, and doctorate coming as third. This information suggests that both Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees are the most common educational levels among applicants. This finding signifies that US visa applicants hold a high level of education. The prominence of doctorate degrees, even if third in frequency, indicates a pool of highly qualified and specialized cadidated. Visa authorities and employers may take note of this educational distribution, potentially influencing the competitiveness of applicants based on their educational backgrounds.

The world map aims to visualize the distribution of the top countries where visa applications originate from, taking into account the birth country as well as the country of citizenship of applicants. When considering birth country, India comes on top, with 31,363 applicants originating from the country, followed by China, with 4,870 applicants, followed by Canada with 2,033 applicants. This data correlates with our research, where India comes on top when it comes to visa applications.

Proposed Solutions:

1- Optimize Online System: Applicants should advocate for embassy investment in optimizing the online system to enhance efficiency. Focus on user-friendly interfaces, mobile responsiveness, clear guidance, and targeted measures to address common issues leading to refiled applications.

2- Validate Information: Applicants are advised to thoroughly review and validate all entered data during the application process to ensure accuracy and completeness, reducing the risk of immediate denial due to inadvertent errors or misinformation.

3- Avoid Traditional Mail Submissions: Discourage the use of traditional mail submissions due to the higher risk of denials caused by potential discrepancies and errors in the manual processing involved.

4- Apply for Correct Visa Type: Ensure applying for the correct visa type, understanding distinctions between similar visas, and aligning qualifications with the intended job to prevent application denial.

5- Advocate for Industry Collaboration: Tech majors should actively advocate for closer collaboration between the immigration department and industry leaders to address specific challenges faced by IT professionals. Proactive research on tech job requirements is recommended.

6- Partnerships with Major Employers: Establish partnerships with major tech employers to streamline the visa application process, address challenges, and ensure a smoother experience for applicants targeting renowned organizations.

7- Seek Assistance from Parent Companies: When applying to a subsidiary, seek assistance from the parent company to enhance the chances of approval, as applications from well-known industry leaders are more likely to be approved.

8- Feedback Mechanism for Past Applicants: Establish a feedback mechanism to collect insights from past applicants, identify pain points, and implement changes for an improved overall application experience.

Conclusion: These proposed solutions collectively aim to address various aspects of the U.S. visa application process, from system optimization and data validation to industry collaboration and feedback mechanisms. Implementing these measures can contribute to a more efficient, accurate, and applicant-friendly visa application experience.

Share Your Experience!

Have you navigated the U.S. visa application process? We’d love to hear about your experiences, challenges, and successes. Share your insights in the comments below and let’s create a space for knowledge-sharing and support as we collectively navigate the path to a thriving career in the United States!

City Echoes: Decoding Chicago’s Crime Patterns for a Safer Beirut Tomorrow

City Echoes: Decoding Chicago’s Crime Patterns for a Safer Beirut Tomorrow

Exposing Beirut’s Struggle with Insight from Chicago’s Urban Symphony

In the once-vibrant areas of Beirut, a city facing economic crisis, a quiet upsurge in crime, especially theft and robbery, casts a shadow. The challenge increases when important crime data is still confidentail, making it more difficult to understand the complex criminal environment in the city. Unflinching in the face of difficulty, our investigation draws inspiration from Chicago’s urban environment and aims to uncover the hidden strands that may lead to crime hotspots and relevant individuals in question. The study turns into a ray of hope, a data-driven compass pointing the path toward strengthening public safety in the face of Beirut’s difficulties.

Cracking the Nuanced Web of Beirut’s Increasing Crime Rates

As we delve deeper into our investigation of Beirut’s urban dynamics, the rise in crime rates becomes an interesting illustration of the city’s intricate issues. The social and economic fabric has been scarred by the turbulent aftermath of the Beirut port explosion and the widespread effects of COVID-19, which created opportunities for crime. The ongoing economic crisis, made worse by inflation and financial stress, drives people to extreme lengths. When there is political turmoil, those who take advantage of the situation and avoid responsibility exploit the confusion.

Connecting Chicago and Beirut through Shared Data Approaches to Reduce Crime

A promising possibility for the implementation of a comparable crime reduction plan is revealed by drawing comparisons between Chicago and Beirut. The Chicago Police and the Lebanese Internal Security Forces (ISF) possess similar datasets regarding crimes. The common data elements set the stage for replicating Chicago’s effective strategy in Beirut, including crime locations, kinds, and the critical differentiation between domestic and non-domestic occurrences.

Here’s to a Safer City

A strategic beacon appeals in the maze of urban issues, where the conflict of rising crime is increasingly complemented by the rhythm of city life. Imagine this: smart use of resources, keen observation of trends, and cooperative interaction with regional authorities. These are the cornerstones of our practical strategy to strengthen public safety:

– Allocating Resources in Hotspot Regions: Determine high-crime areas and use resources like police stations and security cameras strategically.
– Identification of Patterns: Find recurrent crime trends and stay alert of problems near certain hotspots, such as banks and jewelry stores.
– Follow daily and seasonal trends: Assign more officers on duty when crime is at its highest.
– Monitoring and Assessing Performance: Monitor crime rates both in terms of time and location. Perform analysis based on category and use unit performance as a benchmark for efficient research strategies.
Through the perceptive eye of data visualization, all the suggested strategies may be indicated and easily applied, providing a thorough and dynamic perspective on the dynamics of urban crime.

Decoding Happiness: Uncovering Challenges and Proposing Solutions in Lebanon

Decoding Happiness: Uncovering Challenges and Proposing Solutions in Lebanon



Being in a state of happiness is a complicated and diverse mental and emotional condition that involves feeling content, pleased, and fulfilled with one’s life. It is a crucial part of being human and has been a topic of study in philosophy, psychology, and science for many years. The pursuit of happiness is a universal human goal that goes beyond cultural, geographic, and socioeconomic limitations. Yet, happiness remains highly subjective, varying from person to person based on individual and environmental factors. The question arises: Can we quantify this elusive emotion? Is it possible to measure happiness across a population, identify challenges, and propose solutions for the collective well-being?


Decoding the Happiness Index:

Acknowledging the significance of happiness, the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network introduced the World Happiness Report in 2012. This report unveils the Happiness Index, a ranking system that delves into the well-being of nations. Factors such as income, social support, life expectancy, freedom of choice, generosity, and perceptions of corruption contribute to this comprehensive measure.


Unveiling Happiness Pillars:

The United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network not only standardized happiness measures, it also standardized factors that contribute to it, where it defined the following factors as Happiness Pillars: Income, Social Support, Life Expectancy, Freedom to Choose, Generosity and Corruption Index. Considering income, though money doesn’t guarantee happiness, it though plays a role by providing better access to resources, opportunities, and an enhanced standard of living. Social support is emphasized, with human connections forming the fabric of happiness, contributing to a sense of belonging, security, and resilience. Life expectancy is viewed not just as a statistic but as a reflection of access to quality healthcare, living conditions, and overall well-being. Freedom to choose is highlighted, emphasizing that autonomy and the ability to make personal choices directly impact one’s sense of well-being. Generosity is underscored as acts of kindness and generosity foster happiness, creating a positive cycle, especially in societies that prioritize giving. Additionally, the Corruption Index reveals that lower levels of corruption correlate with higher reported levels of happiness, as trust in institutions and a better quality of life go hand in hand.



Lebanon’s Economic Crisis: Impact on Happiness

Lebanon is currently facing a severe economic crisis with soaring debt and dwindling foreign reserves. Unemployment, currency devaluation, and economic instability have triggered widespread stress and declining standards of living. The aftermath ripples through social and political unrest, plunging Lebanon’s happiness index to its lowest.


In 2022 and 2023, Lebanon ranked as the least happy in the MENA region, with a Happiness Index of 2.392. Globally, it stood at 136th out of 137 countries in 2023, highlighting a stark decline. CNN reports that life evaluations in Lebanon lag more than 5 points behind the top 10 happiest nations.


Deepening into Lebanon’s Happiness: Understanding Declines and Designing Solutions

A comprehensive approach to take would be to evaluate the key indicators affecting the happiness index in Lebanon and its decline throughout the years. After which, a framework of policies will be designed to improve the overall happiness and well-being of the Lebanese population.


Verdict: GDP at the forefront of Lebanese well-being:

As the bar chart shows, GDP is perceived to be the main factor that would contribute to the Lebanese happiness score. This means that for the year 2023, the Lebanese population expressed that the economic situation around them is a major contributor to their happiness levels. Since GDP is the main player contributing to the happiness level of the Lebanese population, further analysis should be conducted.


Lebanon’s GDP Over the Years:

In 2018, Lebanon enjoyed an economic height of 55B $. However, the economic crisis in 2019 forced Lebanon into a rapid decline, reaching 23B $ by 2021—a 50% reduction in just 2 years. This economic state is concerning, as GDP takes center stage in Lebanon’s happiness index. The focus now turns to dissecting the factors driving this downturn, an essential step in understanding and rectifying the low happiness score in the country.



Improving happiness in Lebanon: Increase GDP as a main Target:

Understanding Lebanon’s economic health involves looking at the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) formula. GDP, a measure of a country’s economic output, is calculated through an expenditure approach:


GDP = Consumption (C) + Investment (I) + Government Spending (G) + Net Exports (NX)


Net Exports: A nation’s exports minus its imports.

Investment: Business expenditures by businesses and home purchases by households.

Consumption: Private consumption expenditures by households and nonprofit organizations.

Government Spending: The expenditures spent by the government on goods and services in different sectors.

Analyzing Consumption, Investment, Government Spending, and Net Exports individually, helps identify what factors contribute to the country’s declining GDP. 



The C and NX in GDP – Consumption & Net Exports: 

Starting with Consumption, a noticeable dip occurred in 2019 due to government-subsidized policies cutting prices for essentials like fuel and food. However, as these policies relaxed, prices inflated, and by 2023, consumption levels rebounded to normal.

Shifting gears to the Net Exports (Exports – Imports), its line chart shows an increasing trend since 2019. This is explained by the economic crisis that took place that year, where due to the currency devaluation, it became much more costly for people to import products/services from foreign countries. Furthermore, the heightened inflation encouraged the Lebanese people and the government to export goods and services, for the sake of the Dollar Currency acquisition. 

In summary, both Net Exports and Consumption show improvement over time, contradicting the overall GDP decline. This suggests that focusing on these factors might not be the key to improving Lebanon’s GDP, redirecting our attention to other aspects of the economic equation.


The I and G in GDP – Private Investment and Government Spending:

The line chart depicting Private Investments reveals a downward trend since 2019. The economic crisis of that year, coupled with banking restrictions on loans and economic uncertainties, forced a drop in investments from $48 Billion in 2019 to $28 Billion in 2021.

Shifting gears to Government Spending, the scenario is equally grim. The economic and banking crises of 2019 left the government strapped for funds, unable to secure a budget for essential services. Defaulting on Euro Bonds further restricted financial options, leading to a drastic cut in government expenditures from $16 Billion in 2019 to a mere $2 Billion in 2021.

In summary, ‘Private Investment’ and ‘Government Spending’ are the factors contributing to Lebanon’s GDP decline. To reverse the GDP slump and foster happiness, targeted policies must address these crucial aspects, attracting investments and revitalizing government spending.


What to Keep in Mind when Dealing with Lebanon’s Happiness:

  1. Happiness among the Lebanese population is primarily explained by GDP.
  2. Examining changes in GDP’s four pillars, showed the following:
    Consumption has shown consistent stability over the years.
    Net Exports have demonstrated a positive trend in recent years.
    Government Spending and Investment, however, have significantly decreased, notably beginning with the onset of the economic crisis in 2019.
  3. Government Spending and Investment are the primary factors responsible for the decline in Lebanon’s GDP. Addressing these aspects is crucial to enhance the overall happiness index in the country.
  4. Even though Net Exports are experiencing a positive increasing trend, the values are still negative. Introducing certain reforms can help in pushing that value closer to zero or possibly turn the Lebanese trade deficit into a trade surplus.

To achieve the mentioned improvements, specific reforms need to be implemented. Recommendations and solutions will be discussed in detail in the Solutions segment.


Addressing the Core Problem: Solutions to Lebanon’s Decreasing GDP


Improving the I in GDP – Private Investment:

With our primary aim being fostering economic growth and increasing Gross Domestic Product, attracting Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) is a must. This can be achieved through regulations that would create a more attractive environment for investors.

Increasing and Regulating the G in GDP – Government Spending:

Lebanon is already receiving aid and funds from various countries such as the gulf countries. Leveraging these funds and properly utilizing them is essential in addressing key economic challenges faced by Lebanon. Important sectors that the Lebanese government can invest these funds into include but are not limited to: 

Focal Point 1 – The Lebanese Health Sectors: 

Improving Lebanon’s health sector should be a priority for the government. This can be achieved through policies that would emphasize the production of locally made generic medicine, the renovation of public hospitals, and the Expansion of healthcare services for the elderly and people in remote areas of the country. 

Furthermore, government-funded programs for healthcare workers can be introduced alongside a robust awareness campaign to touch on key public health notions such as preventive measures, the importance of seeking medical attention when needed, and healthy living practices.

Focal Point 2 – The Lebanese Educational Sector:

To improve the education sector, the government could focus on renovating public schools to  ensure that they are equipped with the proper technological tools and learning resources and materials to enhance the overall learning experience. 

In addition, increase funding for improvement of the Lebanese University through enhanced administrative processes, and investment in infrastructure upgrades.

In parallel, government funded programs for teachers and career guidance initiatives should be put in place to both train educators on the use of modern pedagogical methods as well as provide students with the information about various career paths they could undertake.

Focal Point 3 – The Lebanese Infrastructure:

Another key area to focus on is the current state of infrastructure in Lebanon. The government, in its expenditure plan, should focus on maintaining and expanding the various infrastructure that would attract factories into the country. In addition, industrial zones with certain benefits to factories could be built in an attempt to increase their local presence. Finally, the government should implement a transparent bidding process for Public Work Projects that would ensure a fair allocation of resources dedicated to maintain, and construct new infrastructure.  


Improving the NX in GDP – Net Exports:

Improving Net Exports in Lebanon could be achieved through a classical protectionist trade policy. This policy aims to boost the domestic economy by increasing tariffs on imports, making imported goods more expensive and locally-produced goods more competitive which shifts consumer demand towards domestic products. As a result, Net Export in Lebanon will increase due to less imports, and more competitive local products that could be exported globally. 


A Measure that Ties it All Up – Enhancing Transparency and Accountability:

Ensuring transparency and accountability is essential when implementing fiscal policies as it involves safeguarding the independence of auditing bodies like the Central Inspection. This institution is responsible for addressing inefficiencies and uncovering any  financial mismanagement.

In addition and to further expand transparency, a national bureau of statistics for accessible economic data can be established to empower and inform the Lebanese people about the current state of their economy.

Implementing these government reforms do not only contribute to an increase in GDP. They also serve in improving the trust people have in their government, which is another factor that directly contributes to the overall Happiness Index. (Government Trust).


A Proof of Success and a Model to Follow – Singapore:

Singapore, a small country in Asia, was exposed to several regional economic crises. However, through robust fiscal policies implemented in the 1960s, Singapore maintained its growth and positioned itself as the happiest country in Asia. 

Therefore, following Singapore’s steps in emphasizing financial management and sector-specific investments would not only recover Lebanon’s GDP, but consequently improve the happiness of its citizens.


Conclusion – Lebanon’s Path to Happiness: 

The Lebanese population expressed that the economic situation around them is a major contributor to their low happiness levels. To revive the economy, largely affected by the 2019 financial crisis, targeted reforms including increased Foreign Direct Investments, efficient fund allocation, and a protective trade policy should be implemented.

As GDP positively influences other happiness index components such as Life Expectancy and Government Trust, increasing it would result in an overall higher Happiness Score. Thus, a concerted effort towards GDP enhancement through focused reforms is not only a remedy for the economic downturn but a pathway to a happier and more prosperous Lebanon.