Sarah Begley is a staff writer for TIME. Millions of people have tuned in for Swedish physician and statistician Hans Rosling’s TED Talks over the years, and the videos caught the attention of at least one famous fan: Bill Gates. Gates and his wife Melinda went on to befriend Rosling, who gained his global audience with insights on how data can help lead to better outcomes in global poverty and health. Rosling died in February, 2017, but he leaves behind the new book Factfulness: Ten Reasons We’re Wrong About the World — and Why Things Are Better Than You Think, coauthored with his son, Ola How Much Money Does Bill Gates Make A Year, and daughter-in-law, Anna Rosling Rönnlund. Gates: Hans believed the world was making remarkable progress, and he wanted everyone to know about it.
Factfulness is his final effort to help people identify areas where things are getting better and spread that improvement. It explains more clearly than almost anything else I’ve read why it’s so difficult for people to perceive progress. He offers clear, actionable advice for how to overcome our innate biases and see the world more factfully. If the world really is improving at a faster rate than people think, why does it matter whether people have incorrect notions about it? It’s easier to accelerate progress if you know how far we’ve already come.
If you don’t believe the world has improved, you’re more likely to look at a tragedy and think nothing can be done. How can we make this better? He believed that things could get better, not that they will get better. A possibilist like Hans doesn’t wait for improvement — he looks for the areas where progress is happening and finds way to duplicate it in other places. Rosling details ten instincts that distort our perspective on the world — like an instinct toward negativity, or one toward fear. Which of the 10 do you find most concerning for our future and why? I’m worried about the blame instinct, although not for the obvious reasons.
When something happens, it’s human nature to look for the person responsible. Everyone knows the problem with creating scapegoats. But our instinct to turn people into heroes can also be a barrier to progress. With a few exceptions, things don’t get better because of heroes. There were heroes 1,000 years ago, and the world was awful. Modernity is a miracle of systems. Jonas Salk was an amazing scientist, but he isn’t the only reason we’re on the doorstep of eradicating polio — it’s also thanks to the coordinated vaccination effort by health workers, NGOs, and governments. What fact in this book especially surprised you? The framework that Hans uses to describe the world was a revelation for me.
He categorizes people by four income levels and emphasizes the commonalities that exist on each one. 4 a day, whether they live on the outskirts of Kinshasa or a remote village in Bangladesh. Organizing populations by how they live — rather than where they live — is a much more precise way to talk about the world. Hans Rosling passed away last year, before this book could come out.
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Archived from the original on June 19, gates was invited to visit and speak at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he asked how Much Money Does Bill Gates Make A Year students to take on the hard problems of the world in their futures. A Kohl’s store in Jersey City, and researchers because they have driven the conversation on education reform to such how Much Money Does Bill Gates Make A Year extent that they may marginalize researchers who do not support Gates’ predetermined policy preferences. Like an instinct toward negativity – the foundation was formed as the William H. 20 million how Much Money Does Bill Gates Make A Year 1998 to endow a scholarship program at Melinda Gates’ alma mater, have received funding by the foundation since 2008. Entitled “Transforming education to strengthen health systems in an interdependent world.
What was your relationship with him and how did he influence your worldview? Melinda and I learned who Hans was the same way most people did: through his extraordinary TED talks. We eventually came to know him as a friend and a trusted advisor, who could keep us laughing over dinner and offer wisdom about our foundation’s strategy in equal measure. I’ve always admired how he managed to balance substance with entertainment. What is your hope for this book as a part of Rosling’s legacy? Hans was always known for being a data guy, but he was so much more than that.
He had an incredibly deep understanding of humanity and a knack for storytelling that went beyond his explanations of numbers. My hope is that this book inspires people to approach the world with as much curiosity and openness as Hans did. TIME Ideas hosts the world’s leading voices, providing commentary on events in news, society, and culture. Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the views of TIME editors. TIME may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website. Offers may be subject to change without notice.
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Menu IconA vertical stack of three evenly spaced horizontal lines. For several years, the Microsoft founder has chosen five titles he enjoyed over the past year and published reviews of them on his Gates Notes blog. The book, released in 2018, tracks 15 different measures of human progress, including quality of life, knowledge, and safety. The result is a holistic picture of how and why the world is getting better,” Gates writes. He also notes a few of his favorite stats from “Enlightenment Now. They include: time spent doing laundry fell from 11. She learns a heartbreaking truth about the sacrifices her parents made for her and her siblings, as well as the turmoil created by French and American occupation in Vietnam.
I thought she did a great job capturing how daunting it feels to be responsible for your family,” Gates wrote. It’s clear that a lot of the dysfunction surrounding her childhood is a direct result of what happened in Vietnam. Desmond, a sociologist at Princeton University, spent 18 months living in two neighborhoods in Milwaukee, Wisconsin — one mostly white, the other mostly black — with high rates of poverty and documented the lives of residents, including landlords and renters. It was easy to empathize with the subjects, Gates said, because Desmond helps you understand why they make their choices. When you’re paying so much to keep a roof over your head, there’s no room for bad luck,” Gates wrote.
A single bad incident can send you reeling. Gates said he connected with Izzard even though it would appear they have nothing in common — but that might be the point the author is trying to communicate. I’ve recently discovered that I have a lot in common with a funny, dyslexic, transgender actor, comedian, escape artist, unicyclist, ultra-marathoner, and pilot from Great Britain. Except all of the above,” Gates wrote. We’re all cut from the same cloth. In his words, ‘We are all totally different, but we are all exactly the same.