GapMinder – A Graphical Representation of Human Development Indicators

Thanks to Dr. Brad Andrew, I’m a big fan of the tool Gapminder, a trend indicator software system.   Wealth and Health of Nations and 200 Years that Changed the World are interactive tools in Gapminder depicting changing national economic indicators. The video below is Hans Rosling’s discussion of how 200 Years that Changed the World analyzes changes in nation-states.



 Each country is designated by a separate circle, the size being proportionate to population, and continents are distinguished by color.  In 1809 all countries had a life expectancy of under 40 years of age, but as economic conditions improved, life expectancy increased.  See the difference in this example between 1900 and 2011.  China is the large red circle.

World history teachers can use this program to visually show how China’s Great Leap Forwards took time and resources to implement.

It also shows how some continents still lag behind in both economic and health indicators.

How could you use this in your classrooms?