Making Research and Innovation in Developing Countries Matter
Edited by Bo Göransson, Claes Brundenius and Carlos Aguirre-Bastos
Chapter 2: The socio-economic context and the Millennium Development Goals
The countries in the survey, Bolivia in South America, Mozambique and Tanzania in East Africa and Vietnam in Southeast Asia, have many similarities but they are also different in many aspects. They vary in size both with respect to area extension and population. All the countries are large by surface area, with Bolivia being by far the largest, followed by Tanzania, Mozambique and Vietnam (Table 2.1). Surprisingly perhaps, we find that Bolivia is by area-size over three times larger than Vietnam. With respect to population the situation is quite different, with Vietnam having by far the largest population (88.8 million inhabitants), followed by Tanzania (44.9), Mozambique (25.2) and last Bolivia with 10.5 million. Bolivia has thus the lowest population density of the countries with only 10 people per square kilometre, with Vietnam at the other extreme with 268 people per square kilometre. Population growth is high in Mozambique and Tanzania – 2.5 and 2.8 per cent, respectively – while modest in Vietnam (1.0 per cent), and also not so high in Bolivia (1.7 per cent). The population estimates for Mozambique and Tanzania take into account death rates as a result of AIDS that has dramatically affected sub-Saharan Africa, and Southern and Eastern Africa in particular. Mozambique and Tanzania have a very young population (with a median age of around 17 years) although this is compensated somewhat by a rather low share of older people in the population (more than 65 years of age). The age dependency ratio is quite high in the two African countries.
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