The factors like economy and education are used to measure/decide how a country has been developed.

The factors like economy and education measure/decide how a country has been developed.

Basically the human judge a country in terms of such factors. So I'm sure of the 1st sentence being right. But I am not about 2nd one and it seems pretty awkward only for the case with 'measure'.

But in other view point, it seems possible to use because all measuring would go in terms of those factors, so it is almost done by them.

What is proper way to say? and What causes this strangeness?

  • I would say, in terms of active voice, ...... define how a country ..... . Also, I have never seen view point but, point of view. – Cardinal Jul 8 '16 at 9:34
  • @Cardinal Viewpoint is more usual, but it's fine. – StoneyB Jul 8 '16 at 10:01
  • @StoneyB Thanks, In fact, I usually see piece of writings whose authors used a phrase like "form a/the different point of view". I leaned something new, viewpoint without space between view and point. – Cardinal Jul 8 '16 at 10:09
  • I thought that factors would sooner influence and affect, cause or determine something than measure and decide it; although I may be wrong as soon as it hasn't been pointed out so far. – VictorB Jul 8 '16 at 10:22
  • This shows the relatively rare usage of the collocation "factors measure". – VictorB Jul 8 '16 at 10:58

It is common to say that [inanimate factor X] measures Y, so the construction in your second sentence will pass without comment once you delete the article:

Factors like economy and education measure ...

Decide, however, would be inappropriate: this word almost always implies consciousness. Determine would be better.

How a country has developed is probably not what you want: how would be used to refer to the historical process and means of development. What you are measuring is probably How far or to what degree the country has been developed.

And it would be acceptable to use this "middle voice" with develop, too:

... how far the country has developed.

There's another possibility you might consider:

Factors like economy and education are measures of the country's development.

  • Thanks for perfect answer but let me ask one more. In the last sentence, 'measures' means something like 'means' or 'policies'? – JBL Jul 8 '16 at 11:10
  • @JBL - No, in this context "measure" means something like "a basis or standard for comparison": see definition 6. – stangdon Jul 8 '16 at 12:03

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