I chose to compare and contrast the countries Madagascar and Singapore and their development through the years 1800 to now. I chose these two because they are very different economically as Singapore is a MEDC and Madagascar is a LEDC. MEDC stands for more economically developed country and LEDC stands for less economically developed country. This means that MEDC generally are richer and have higher living standards and LEDC have less. I will be using the 4 indicators life expectancy, GDP per capita, birth rate and literacy rate to compare and contrast these countries.
Life Expectancy and GDP per Capita
Life expectancy is the average years that people in the country live. There may be people who live over and under the life expectancy rate because this is averaged.
From 1800 to 1820, Singapore and Madagascar had the same life expectancy rate, at around 30 years. But at 1820, Singapore’s life expectancy rose suddenly to 34 years, and Madagascar stayed the same. They both continued into 1915 at the same life expectancy rate since 1820, but increasing fast in income per person. But when 1917 hit, they both sunk straight to under 20 years for life expectancy because it was during world war 1.
For GDP per capita, Madagascar was moving slowly but surely higher, but around 1970 and ever since, the GDP has stopped and increasing, and sometimes even decreasing. The reason for this is probably because the government was dishonest, and stole most of the aid money sent by other countries. Also, as Madagascar is very isolated, importing or exporting with Madagascar costs lots of money, as it all must be shipped by plane or boat. But there is chance that Madagascar can increase in GDP in the future. This is because large amounts of oil have been found, and there is chance that tourism could rise.
Singapore on the other hand, increased quite quick throughout the years, and is now one of the most economically developed countries. Since the birth rate is very low, the existing children have more money to get proper education. Also, drug possessions ends in death penalty, so that saves a lot of money. Believe it or not, drugs take up lots of money in many other countries. Lastly, the taxes are low, which encourage business.
Birth rate is the average number of births per 1000 people.
At around 1800, all the countries were in a straight line when comparing birth rate and children per women. This means that most women had around the same amount of children. In the 1800, Singapore was in about the middle of the line, an average of all the countries at about 40 birth rate and 5.5 children per women. Madagascar on the other hand, was on the top of the line at around 47 birth rate and 7 children per woman. For around 80 years, the birth rates and children per women stayed the same in most countries including Madagascar and Singapore. But in 1883 Singapore’s birth rate dropped straight to 15 birth rate. From than Singapore’s birth rates went wild, and changed constantly. This is because at around the 1970s, Singapore’s government decided that it would cost too much for the population to keep increasing, so they made a campaign to only have 2 children. They even started penalising families with more than 2 children.
But this worked too well, and now Singapore’s birth rates are very low, and as the population is decreasing fast, the government is trying to increase the population again. Madagascar’s development in birth rate was quite similar to many of the other countries, moving down slowly, but did not have any sharp developments like Singapore.
Literacy Rate is the percentage of the population of a particular span of age above 7 who can read and write with understanding.
In this case, I will be talking about the literacy rate of people aged 15 ~ 24. Madagascar and Singapore are very different in literacy rates. Singapore has had high literacy rates since 1980, and simply slowly increased through time. Madagascar, on the other hard, I could not find any information on gapminder of the literacy rate before the 2000s. The part which I can see though, shows that Madagascar’s literacy rate is going down, this is because many of the people don’t have money for education.
Cowen, Tyler. “Why Does Singapore Have Such a Low Birth Rate?” Marginal REVOLUTION RSS. Magical Revolution University, 28 Oct. 2013. Web. 01 Dec. 2015.
Butler, Rhett A. “MADAGASCAR’S ECONOMY for Kids.” MADAGASCAR’S ECONOMY for Kids. Wild Madagascar, 2008. Web. 01 Dec. 2015.