Here's How Data Can Solve the World's Most Challenging Problems

Swedish academic and Gapminder Foundation co-founder Hans Rosling says data doesn't always back up our conceptions about the world. In the video above, Rosling explains that our ideas about developed and developing countries largely reflect the reality of fifty years ago, rather than today.
The video, The River of Myth, was released to coincide with Bill Gates' annual letter, and shares its emphasis on the power of measuring to achieve progress.
Rosling begins by examining the huge gap between child mortality rates in developed and developing countries fifty years ago, in 1963. By 1990, many countries had made progress, while others, such as Ethiopia, had hardly moved. In the last decade, however, Ethiopia caught up significantly. Rosling says that the East African nation's rapid progress can be an example for the countries where child mortality rates are still crippling.
"To ensure that happens, we must measure the progress of countries. It's only by measuring that we can cross the river of myth," he says.
If others follow Ethiopia's lead, Rosling says, preventable child mortality can be history by 2030.

Thumbnail image courtesy of The Gates Notes

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