lundi 16 mars 2015

High technology and pauverty

Lire cet article en français

The World Bank publishes on its website an array of indicators about many aspects of the world. While looking at them, I had the idea to try to evaluate the place of research and development in each country’s economy.

Using pandas and matplotlib, I built a scatter graph relating the average high tech exports ratio (1), the average number of patents per capita (2, 3, 4) and the average GDP per capita (4, 5) of each country for the years 2008-2012.

I am not an economist, but I think we can make a few observations by looking at this graph:

  • top right countries are the one where high technology is an important part of the economy;
  • patent filing is a rich country activity;
  • in some countries, the manufacturing of high technology goods is an important part of the economy; those country ranks toward the middle and middle-high in term of GDP per capita rank;
  • in poor countries, high technology is not a significant part of the economy; they fill few patents and they export few high tech goods;
  • there seems to be a link between the wealth of a country and the importance of technology in its economy; however, technology is not the only wealth factor: countries like Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Luxemburg are doing quite well with oil and financial services.

Points on the graph are clickable; they link to the Observatory of Economic Complexity, where you can have an in-depth look at each country economy.