Passing the Baton


I made this little graph at Google’s Public Data Explorer.

It shows ‘High-technology exports’ as a percentage of manufactured exports. These exports are defined as those with a high R&D intensity, such as “aerospace, computers, pharmaceuticals, scientific instruments and electrical equipment” and the data comes from the World Bank.

(Click image to enlarge)

In case it is difficult to see, the red line that goes from about 33% in 1990 down to about 23% is for the United States. And the orange line that steadily goes up until it passes the US is for China.

At the Public Data Explorer’s website I also saw this graphic: 

(click image to enlarge)

 It says:

Living longer with fewer children

This chart correlates life expectancy and number of children per woman for each country in the world. The bubbles are sized by population and colored by region. Over time, most countries have moved towards the bottom right corner of the chart, corresponding to long lives and low fertility. Note the progression of the bubble for China- in the late 60’s and 70’s life expectancy rose quickly, then the implementation of the one-child policy caused a drop in the number of children per woman.
But I have shown in a previous blog post of mine, ‘The One-Child Policy’s Impact on Chinese Fertility‘, that most of the drop in the number of children per woman largely occurred before the implementation of the One-Child Policy. To say that the One-Child Policy “caused a drop in the number of children per woman” is not really true.

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