Zones of Thought

Friday, December 14th, 2012

Some people think that science, math, and engineering are found everywhere, like soccer, but actually, they are regional practices, Gregory Cochran notes, more like hurling or tossing the caber:

In the map, countries are resized according to the number of scientific papers they produce.  Population size plays a role, but average productivity matters more.  Note that Singapore, with a population of 5 million, looks bigger than Indonesia, with 240 million people.

Like the Chinese and Indians, some ethnic groups show mediocre results in their benighted homelands and better results in Western countries. On the other hand, other groups do poorly everywhere.

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