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Fact Fullness - Hans Rosling

Positive population trends show hope for the future

The author, who is a doctor and an adviser to the World Health Organization and UNICEF, predicts that by 2040, the number of people in the world who live in conditions similar to the United States will rise from a present 8,000,000 to perhaps 17,000,000. Their standards of living will rise greatly, and number of folks in what he calls Level 1, or almost subsistence living, may go from a present level of another 8,000,000 down to 5,000,000. Still a very high number, but also a very positive trend.

The truth in statistics isn't as negative as other authors would have you believe

He identifies the reasons we tend to view things in a negative fashion, and how we often overestimate the impact of disasters, sickness and the like on populations. One example he cites is that in a recent survey of a gathering of global finance managers believed that 20% of the world’s one-year children have had at least one vaccination. The actual answer is 80%, and many other similar examples are cited.

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