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If The Earth Were A Village Of 100 People

Expedition 46 flight engineer Tim Peake of the European Space Agency (ESA) shared this photograph of Earth with his social media followers on Jan. 25, writing: "Beautiful night pass over Italy, Alps and Mediterranean."

There are more than 7 billion of us on the planet now. We comprise a wildly diverse set of ages, nationalities, religious groups, incomes and technological capacities. Given the magnitude of our numbers, it can be hard to really grasp how that diversity plays out. How many of us have cell phones? How many are homeless? How many are in their early 20s? How many have been to college?

This short video provides some eye opening insights into the distribution of human welfare.

By reducing the statistics to a village of just 100 people, the graphics make it easier to grasp both how well, and how terribly, we are doing as a species.

For example its pretty remarkable that 75 out of 100 of our global villagers have a cell phone. And given that fact, its pretty sad that 23 of our villagers don't have regular access to housing.

There have been many versions of this kind video and they all seem to quote more or less the same kinds of numbers. The statistics in this video, for the most part, correspond to data pulled from various sources by other groups, like the 100People project, tracking human populations in a similar way.

For more details on the data you can look here and here and here.


Adam Frank is a co-founder of the 13.7 blog, an astrophysics professor at the University of Rochester, a book author and a self-described "evangelist of science." You can keep up with more of what Adam is thinking on Facebook and Twitter: @adamfrank4

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