Country rankings

Interesting statistics from http://www.nationmaster.com/ – of course, to be taken with a pinch of salt in some cases, especially given the fact that they don’t have statistics for an awful lot of countries.

Ireland has the top score for countries surveyed in:
* Agriculture – Fertilizer use
* Economy – Development assistance to LDCs
* Economy – GDP growth (1998-2002)
* Economy – Import growth (1993-2002)
* Economy – Targeting of foreign aid
* Education – Student attitude – Find school boring
* Health – Circulatory disease deaths
* Health – Growth in health expenditure (per annum)
* Health – Respiratory disease deaths
* Labor – Working time to buy a car
* Labor – Working time to buy chicken
* Lifestyle – Beer consumption
* Lifestyle – Confidence in social institutions – Civil service
* Lifestyle – Political orientation – Far right (self-described)
* People – Average size of households
* People – Home ownership
* People – Households with more than 5 people

Ireland has the lowest score for countries surveyed in:
* Agriculture – Exports to USA – Kohlrabi kale and other edible brassicas (no surprise)
* Crime – Suicide rates in ages above 75
* Economy – Government spending in research and development
* Education – Educational attainment – Senior secondary
* Education – Total expenditure as % of GDP
* Environment – Expenditure pollution control as % of GDP
* Environment – Known reptile species (again, no big surprise)
* Labor – Employment rate of lesser educated women
* Lifestyle – Coffee consumption (that is more surprising)
* Lifestyle – Members of voluntary organisations – Environmental
* Lifestyle – Members of voluntary organisations – Professional
* Lifestyle – Not proud of their nationality
* Lifestyle – Undesirable neighbours – Heavy drinkers (ie not very many people object to living next to them)
* Lifestyle – Undesirable neighbours – Immigrants (ie not very many people object to living next to them)
* People – Disabled persons employment
* Taxation – Contribution by poorest 30%
* Transportation – Airports – with paved runways (2,438 to 3,047 m) (per $ GDP)
* Transportation – Cars

The high score in how long you have to work to buy a car or a chicken, and the low scores for government investment in education, came as a surprise to me.

United Kingdom is ranked top in:
* Economy – GDP per capita in 1820
* Economy – GDP per capita in 1900
* Education – Private school enrolment – secondary level
* Energy – Nuclear energy consumption in 1965 (per capita) (why on earth is this relevant?)
* Health – Obesity in men
* Immigration – Asylum Seekers (per $ GDP)
* Language – English speakers (per capita)
* Lifestyle – Confidence in social institutions – Armed forces
* Lifestyle – Tea consumption (Ireland is second)
* Military – Exports to developing nations (per $ GDP)
* Military – Exports to developing nations (per capita)
* Taxation – Components of taxation – Property tax

United Kingdom is ranked bottom in:
* Agriculture – Exports to USA – (lots of obscure things)
* Crime – Bribery victims
* Crime – Murders with firearms (per capita)
* Crime – Suicide rates in ages 55-64
* Crime – Suicide rates in ages 65-74
* Environment – Pollution – Carbon Dioxide from fossil fuels 1990
* Environment – Pollution – Sulfur Oxides per capita
* Environment – Waste water treatment expenditure
* Health – Death from cancer
* Internet – Broadband access
* Labor – Working time to buy bread
* Lifestyle – Confidence in social institutions – Press
* Lifestyle – Members of voluntary organisations – Education
* Lifestyle – Members of voluntary organisations – Parties
* Lifestyle – Members of voluntary organisations – Unions
* Media – Television reception through cable (surely out of date by now!)
* Mortality – Bitten or struck by other mammals (and many many others)
* Transportation – Airports – with unpaved runways (2,438 to 3,047 m)

Surprised by the low rates for suicide and cancer deaths; I suspect this may reflect a small sample of coutries.

Belgium ranks top in:
* Democracy – Female ministers
* Education – Share of vocational tertiary qualifications awarded to females (first degree) (per capita)
* Education – Student attitude – Will not go to school
* Education – Students from households with dictionary (age 13) (yeah, with three official languages not so surprising)
* Environment – Non-wildness
* Environment – SO2 emissions per populated area
* Health – Transplants – Heart and lung (per $ GDP)
* Health – Transplants – Heart and lung (per capita)
* Health – Transplants – Liver (per capita)
* Industry – Car production (per capita)
* Industry – Motor vehicle production (per capita)
* Internet – Internet charges
* Labor – Working time to buy a television set
* Lifestyle – Undesirable neighbours – Different race
* Lifestyle – Undesirable neighbours – Immigrants
* Media – Pay TV subscribers
* Media – Television reception through cable
* People – Divorces per 100 marriages
* Taxation – Total tax wedge (single worker)

Belgium ranks last for:
* Agriculture – Meat production (per capita)
* Economy – Difference between male and female median full-time earnings as % of male median full-time earnings
* Lifestyle – Confidence in social institutions – Police
* Media – Television reception by terrestrial means
* Media – Television reception through satellite
* People – Attitude of women – Women are better off now
* Transportation – Airports – with paved runways (914 to 1,523 m) (per $ GDP)

The high taxation I’m well aware of, and the ubiquity of cable TV doesn’t surprise. The high rates of divorce and organ transplants are news to me. And the fact that men and women earn more equal rates of pay here, rather than anywhere else is a bit surprising – why here?

United States ranks top for many many things including:
* Agriculture – Banana imports
* Agriculture – Cotton exports
* Crime – Adults prosecuted (per capita)
* Crime – Prisoners (per capita)
* Crime – Rapes
* Crime – Software piracy losses
* Crime – Total crimes
* Democracy – Presidential elections – Voting age population
* Economy – Debt – external
* Economy – Exports
* Economy – GDP
* Economy – GDP (PPP)
* Economy – GDP in 1970
* Economy – GDP per capita in 1950
* Economy – Gross National Income
* Education – Average years of schooling of adults
* Education – Literacy – Adults with at least moderate literacy (female)
* Education – Tertiary enrollment
* Education – Total expenditure as % of GDP
* Energy – Electricity – consumption
* Energy – Electricity – production
* Energy – Nuclear electricity generation
* Energy – Nuclear energy consumption
* Energy – Oil consumption
* Energy – Oil imports {net}
* Energy – Oil production in 1972
* Energy – Oil production in 1982
* Energy – Usage per person
* Environment – CO2 Emissions
* Environment – Threatened species
* Food – McDonalds restaurants
* Food – McDonalds restaurants (per capita)
* Health – Plastic surgery procedures
* Health – Teen birth rate
* Health – Teenage pregnancy
* Health – Teenage pregnancy (per capita)
* Health – Teenage pregnancy (share)
* Health – Total expenditure as % of GDP
* Immigration – New citizenships
* Internet – Hosts
* Internet – Internet Service Providers (ISPs)
* Internet – Linux web servers
* Internet – Livejournal users
* Internet – Users
* Labor – Female decision makers
* Labor – Gender division of housework (ie most evenly divided between mena nd women)
* Language – English speakers
* Lifestyle – Confidence in social institutions – Church
* Lifestyle – Members of voluntary organisations – Parties
* Lifestyle – Soft drink consumption
* Lifestyle – Undesirable neighbours – Criminal record holders
* Lifestyle – Undesirable neighbours – Heavy drinkers
* Lifestyle – Very proud of their nationality
* Media – Cinemas
* Media – Films produced
* Media – Personal computers
* Media – Radios
* Media – Telephones – main lines in use
* Media – Telephones – mobile cellular
* Media – Television viewing
* Military – Expenditures – dollar figure
* Military – Exports to developing nations
* Military – WMD (all categories)
* Mortality – Handgun discharge (and many many others)
* People – Divorce rate
* People – Marriage rate
* People – Nobel prize laureates
* People – One person households
* People – Teenage birth rate
* Religion – Jehovahs Witnesses
* Religion – Jews
* Sports – Summer olympic medals {all time}
* Transportation – Aircraft departures
* Transportation – Airports
* Transportation – Highways (total)
* Transportation – Motor vehicles
* Transportation – Railways (standard gauge)
* Transportation – Railways (total)

United States ranks bottom in:
* Agriculture – Banana exports (per $ GDP)
* Agriculture – Banana exports (per capita)
* Crime – Software piracy rate (ie proportion of software in circulation that is pirated)
* Economy – Commitment to foreign aid
* Education – Educational attainment – Junior secondary
* Education – Literacy – Adults with at least moderate literacy (male)
* Education – Spending per primary school student (per $ GDP)
* Education – Spending per secondary school student (per $ GDP)
* Health – Stomach cancer deaths
* Labor – Unemployment benefit as % of GDP
* Lifestyle – Wine consumption
* People – Age at first marriage for men
* People – Age at first marriage for women
* Taxation – Components of taxation – Goods and service tax
(and a number of other statistics derived from dividing by population or GDP twice)

The high level of crime comes as little surprise. I am surprised that such a high proportion of educational expenditure seems to have so little result – and particularly that it’s not reaching the schools – where is it all going? on the universities? The “age at first marriage” and other family-related stats (loads of marriage, loads of divorce, loads of teenage pregnancy) are interesting too.

While the US has the youngest average age at first marriage for both women (25) and men (26) Belgium, of all places is second – at 26.6 and 28.9. It’s a small sample of countries of course with Sweden at the other end of the scale (30.4 and 32.9).

Anyway, that’s enough of that.

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