Global Inequalities

This Geography quiz looks at global inequalities. There are global differences in economic development and quality of life. There are several ways of measuring these global inequalities, the ones that you need to know for your GCSE are the GNI (Gross National Income per person), birth and death rates including infant mortality, life expectancy, people per doctor, literacy rates, availability of clean water and the HDI (Human Development Index).

The demographic transition model illustrates how a population changes with time. Despite its grand sounding title, it is designed to look at how birth and death rates have an impact on the population of an area or country. There are five stages and each is linked to a stage of development - you are expected to know the five stages and be able to give examples of areas or countries at each stage.

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You also need to know some of the causes of these inequalities and the consequences of them. For example, areas in the tropical rainforests of South America are very remote and difficult to access so trade, good healthcare, access to clean water and so on is very limited. The consequence of this is that the people living in the area will have low incomes and short life expectancies which could lead them to migrate. In some countries, for example the LEDC Romania, the desire to have a better quality of life has led to international migration.

Various strategies exist for reducing the global development gap between countries. Some of these are carried out by governments, for example aid, debt relief and loans. TNCs (Trans-national companies) will invest, bringing industrial development to LEDCs. This benefits both the LEDC and the TNC as labour costs are lower but there are jobs for local people and in most cases, there is extra income for the LEDC in the form of taxes on business profits. Other strategies that help to reduce global inequality are fairtrade agreements and the massively important tourism industry. Spending from foreign tourists can introduce a lot of money into some deprived areas which lack the resources for other industry.

Some LEDCs and NEEs (newly emerging economies - also known as NICs or newly industrialised countries) are now experiencing rapid economic development which leads to significant social, environmental and cultural change. An example of this is China where there are extremes of poverty and wealth, uncontrolled pollution from industrial activity and power generation, environmental damage from large-scale projects and significant cultural change.

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  1. Which of the following is NOT a way of measuring global inequality?
    These are not the only indicators of global inequality, make sure that you remember as many as you can for your exam
  2. How many stages are there in the demographic transition model?
    When it was originally developed, there was no stage five
  3. Italian women are deciding that a career is more important than a family and many decide to not have children at all by being sterilised. On the basis of that information, at which stage of the demographic transition model is Italy?
    There is an ageing population and birth rates are lower than death rates, so the population is in decline
  4. The demographic transition model (DMT) has limitations, not all countries will pass through all stages. Which of the following is NOT a limitation of the DMT?
    Since it was developed by studying European and north American countries, it may not work properly for LEDCs in other parts of the world
  5. One factor that is used to determine the development level of a country is how the economy is distributed between the four sectors of industry. Which of the following is the correct name for this distribution?
    The different sectors of industry are primary, secondary, tertiary and quaternary. The poorest, least developed countries have mainly primary sector industries
  6. Which of the following is NOT used for the HDI (human development index)?
    Wealth is used as part of the HDI but it is related to individuals' access to wealth such as jobs and not to the wealth of the country as a whole. The HDI is measured using a scale of 0 - 1
  7. How does the GDI differ from the GNI?
    We hope you didn't choose the first option, although it is true, is isn't really geography! The GDI only measures the income from industries within the country. Both figures are usually divided by the population to give a standard figure 'per capita'
  8. Many MEDCs make allowances in their domestic budgets to provide aid to LEDCs. Which of the following types of aid is NEVER given directly by a single government?
    This type of aid is given through organisations like the World Bank. Money is donated by several countries and the World Bank or other international organisation decides on how the money will be distributed. Tied aid is another name for conditional aid
  9. In which of the stages of the demographic transition model is the population stable?
    At stage 1, birth and death rates are both high but balance out. In stage 4 birth and death rates are low but also balance out
  10. Which of the following factors could slow down the economic development of an area within a country?
    Poor healthcare leads to high death rates and low life expectancy. The usual response to this is for people living in such areas to have large families to keep the population stable

Author: Kev Woodward

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