Economically Advanced Economies

One of the topics studied in GCSE Geography is the different types of economies found in different parts of the world, such as LEDCs and emerging economies. This quiz focusses on economically advanced economies, or MEDCs

The United States of America, Japan and Western Europe are often seen as being the major players when discussing economically advanced economies, or MEDCs. These economies were built during the Industrial Revolution and have dominated the markets ever since. This has lead to somewhat of a north/south divide, with the bulk of the MEDCs being in the Northern Hemisphere (other than Australia and New Zealand, whose economies were initially built by the European market but have maintained a strong position due to having large amounts of natural resources).

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There are a number of indicators that geographers use to assess the state of a country’s economy. There are a series of economic and non-economic factors that are often linked. Literacy rates directly link to the skills of the workforce, whilst nations with poor health care will lose members of society to disease and so will have far lower productivity rates.

Many economically advanced economies have a population that is proportionally older, as birth rates have fallen below 2.1 children per mother. This means that populations may start to shrink in the future and there are more retired people than there are people in the workforce. Migration tends to be from emerging economies into economically advanced economies. Some see this as a solution to the shrinking workforce, whilst others see the influx of migrant workers as being a drain on the economy as they send money home to their families, and some may be able to claim assistance from the local government. These economically advanced economies may rely on emerging economies to provide raw materials and primary sector industries as their own economies have become dominated by secondary and tertiary industries.

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  1. What are the spending priorities of an economically advanced economy?
    As economies develop, they look to improve the lives and skills of the population, rather than spending on the military and paying off their debts
  2. How will birth and death rates change as economies become more developed?
    There is a direct correlation between birth rates and female literacy rates - so as the nation develops birth rates fall. At the same time, better health care and security mean that average life expectancy increases, helped in part by a reduction in infant mortality
  3. What is GDP?
    A larger GDP means there is more money to invest in improving the country, including education and health
  4. What is the Human Development Index?
    There are a wide number of measurements in the HDI, including access to education, risk of disease and infant mortality rates
  5. What is the correlation between literacy and GDP per capita?
    A skilled workforce allows for people to undertake more skilled jobs and so increase their economic outputs. Also, as a country's GDP rises it has more money to spend on education, in turn increasing literacy
  6. Which of these nations is not seen as being economically advanced?
    China is an emerging economy - relatively low literacy rates, as well as various other unfavourable economic indicators, are countered by being a global mega power
  7. Inflation is a measure of how much the prices of goods, services and wages rise each year. Why does high inflation show that the economy is not developed?
    Inflation can be a huge problem if it goes out of control, devaluing the country's economy and making it unattractive to investors
  8. What does economic structure measure?
    As a country develops, the skilled and financial sectors will improve, changing the ratio between these three sectors
  9. What is the pattern of development in the EU?
    The EU comprises countries from both Western and Eastern Europe. As one of the most developed regions, Western Europe represents a huge proportion of the world's economically advanced economies. Eastern Europe on the other hand, has a number of developing nations
  10. Why is the inequality in wealth an important measure of a country's economic development?
    Nations whose wealth inequality is pronounced are more likely to have a large proportion of the population living below the minimum standards required for a country to grow and prosper

Author: Ruth M

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