Progress in Life Expectancy

It’s important for us to realize the great progress humanity has made in the last 200 or so years. Life expectancy at birth is a summary measure of human wellbeing.

For nearly all of human history, life expectancy at birth was around 30 years in all regions of the world. Then around 200 years ago, global health inequality became a reality. The website, Our World in Data, presents data extraordinarily well.

Here’s a graphic on life expectancy at birth around the world for 1800, 1950, and 2015. (Click on the image to open in a new tab.)

We note that Indian life expectancy of 68 years in 2015 is the same as that of the US in 1950.

The world is getting better in all sorts of ways. Life expectancy is one of the best indicators of progress around the world.

Author: Atanu Dey


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