Research and Development Funding By Country
There's a very cool website
that shows maps of the world, where the size of each country is changed according to measures of that country. For example, the map above is research and development (R&D) funding.
Most enlarged, perhaps, is Israel, which spends a whopping 5% of its GDP on R&D; that's nearly twice what the US spends (Ruvinsky, 2007). Note that Japan is also very big. The entire continent of Africa almost disappears entirely.
I'm living in Canada now, and I'm disappointed to see that Canada has been shrunk quite a bit.
The website is fun to explore. The map for poverty
is, as you can see below, about the opposite of the R&D map.
Makes sense, you might say. They have more important things to spend money on, like the basics of their populace's welfare. Maybe so, but maybe not. It could be that cutting spending on R&D helps the country's present while dooming its future: "Basic research in the 1920s laid the foundation for the microelectronics industry of the 1950s; physicists' discoveries in the 1950s led to the nanotechnology of the 1990s." (Ruvinsky, 2007)
Ruvinsky, J. (2007). Planet science. Discover, October, 2007, 42--43.