Christian Long

Hans Rosling: Asia’s Rise – How and When?

In TED Talks on May 4, 2010 at 5:13 am

Reflection by COLTON C.

Original TED page w/ speaker bio, links, comments, etc:

Hans Rosling:  Asia’s Rise – How and When?

Hans Rosling is someone who fell in love with stats as a young boy.

During his stay in India as a guest student he took a one month public health course and that changed his mind set forever. It wasn’t the information given but it was the “brutal realization” that the Indian students were better than him. He talks about how he was one of the top kids in his class in Sweden but when he came to India he was at the bottom. This is what led him to think that the western world will no longer dominate the world forever. Hans’s presentation is to try and predict when Asia will regain its dominance in the world.

When Hans says that Asia will regain dominance, he doesn’t mean for the whole economy of India or China to be greater than that of Great Britain, but that of each individual person. His example starts in 1858 when the trans Atlantic cable allowed Queen Victoria and U.S. president Buchanan. Also in 1858 India’s rebellion against foreign rule had been defeated and China had also been defeated in the opium war. This allowed Britain to keep control over the Asian trade markets and economy.

On one of Hans’s presentations, he compares 5 countries by their average income per person and their life expectancy. In the beginning, 1858, all 5 countries were relatively low but as years went on, Britain, The U.S., and Japan had increased dramatically. Hans just goes on to explain how the different countries began to increase in their health and economy. Hans Rosling predicts that the economies of the Western world and Asia will be the same at precisely July 27, 2048 as long as the inequalities, climate, and war do not affect it.

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