A dream come true

Anna Rosling Rönnlund

carosel-image2

What does the world really look like? How do other people really live? If we could see beyond the drama of the news headlines and the glamour of glossy travel ads, what could we learn about the world’s inhabitants – and about ourselves? At Dollar Street we’ve been curious about this for a long time.

It started as a simple thought: what if we could see statistics? What if, instead of trying to understand the numbers in a table or the figures in a graph, we could get a picture of what was being portrayed? Not all of us are good at statistics. (Let’s face it, almost none of us are.) But I’ve always had a passion for photography and for trying to make sense of people’s everyday lives. I knew I was on to something, and the vision of Dollar Street slowly started taking form.

Together with my husband, Ola Rosling, I started documenting the first homes back in 1999 (at my mother’s house in Ludvika, Sweden and with the Papon family in the Dominican Republic). With a grant from SIDA I could also document homes in Uganda, South Africa and Mozambique. The first interface was created and my idea started taking physical form.

At Gapminder we were at that time working on the bubble graphs that we would later sell to Google, and it took almost all of our time. But the idea of Dollar Street – a visual framework that would help us understand socio-economic differences of the world – didn’t leave me.

At first I wanted to travel the world and photograph every home myself. Yes, maybe a little naive. Today we work with photographers all over the world and Dollar Street is fast becoming what I envisioned all along. Today we feature more than 200 homes in about 50 countries, with a grand total of over 30 000 photos and 10 000 videos from these homes. A generous grant from Swedish Postkod Foundation made it possible to give Dollar Street the time needed, and in three years time we have collected photos and developed a tool free for everyone to use. It’s a dream come true! And hopefully one that you’ll enjoy as much as I do. Now go explore!

Teacher’s guide: 200 years that changed the world

Quick Links
Download PDF
Download Word
Share
Levels
Secondary school
Subjects
History, geography & social studies.

About the Lesson/Teacher’s guide

This teacher guide explains how you can use Gapminder World to lecture about global development from 1800 until today. For inspiration, you can watch a brief video-lecture with Hans Rosling here.

Key messages of the lecture

  • In 1800, income per person was low and life expectancy was very short in all countries.
  • Health is better everywhere today, even in the poorest countries.
  • Income is much higher in most, but not all, countries today.
  • The income and health gaps between countries are larger today.
  • Most people today live in “middle income” countries

Teacher’s guide: Global Development Quiz

Quick Links
Download PDF
Download Word
Levels
Secondary school
Subjects
History & social studies.

About the Quiz/Teacher’s guide

Use this quiz to introduce subjects such as global health, the effects of HIV, population growth and carbon dioxide emissions, or as starting point to discuss what development is. What do the indicators in these quizzes say about the world?
Several of the questions illustrate the so-called demographic transition: most countries in the world have gone from having many children and high mortality to few children and low mortality.

The quiz uses Gapminder World. All you’ll need is the Internet, a computer and a projector. Download the PDF and get going!

Crisis narrows China-UK gap

About this Video

200 years ago, United Kingdom was a leading nation of the world – both in regard to health and economy. In this video, Hans Rosling details UK’s 200-year journey, to present time, and also shows that China, in the coming five years, will narrow the gap to UK faster than ever.

Related content

See UK and China in Gapminder World.

200 years that changed the world

Switch off (and on) subtitles by clicking the icon in the bottom right corner of the video player.

About this Video

It was the last 200 years that changed the world. In 1809 all countries of the world had a life expectancy under 40 years and an income per person less than 3000 dollar per year. Since then the world has changed but it was not until after the second world war that most countries started to improve.

For the first time, Gapminder can now visualize change in life expectancy and income per person over the last two centuries. In this Gapminder video, Hans Rosling shows you how all the countries of the world have developed since 1809 – 200 years ago.

The interactive animations and corresponding documentation are freely available at www.gapminder.org/world.

Download

Download video in high resolution here.

Related content

200 year time series in Gapminder World
Teacher Guide: 200 years that changed the world

Two new videos with Hans Rosling

200 years that changed the world

– 200 years of history in 4.5 minutes.

Viewer responses to the video:

“Thanks for posting another thoroughly thought provoking video.”
“This is brilliant, compelling and amazingly well visualized.”

Shanghai, New York, Mumbai

– Is Shanghai healthier than New York? And how do Washington D.C. and Mumbai rank?

Be the first to comment this video!

Shanghai, New York, Mumbai

About this Video

See the development of three centers of trade, Shanghai, New York and Mumbai.
Also, a comparison of the capitals: Beijing, Washington, D.C. and New Delhi.
And finally, a note from Professor Rosling on how one can measure the progress of President Obama’s intentions to improve the health system of the US.

Related content

Gaps within China, India, US

Health, Money & Sex in Sweden

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=18MZmVDv7uo

About this Gapminder video

In the first Gapminder video from Gapminder, Professor Hans Rosling shows how economic growth, public health and sexual rights have changed in Sweden during 300 years.

In only 6 minutes he shows life expectancy and GDP per capita of Sweden from 1709 to 2004. With trendalyzer graphics he compares historic Sweden with countries of today. 300 years of Swedish progress covers today’s disparity from Sierra Leone to Japan. Wheras education of midwives started in 1709 it was only in the 1970’es that family planning was included in their training. Sexual rights came late in Sweden compared to progress in health and wealth.