education, smart, europe

Although it is not easy to measure how smart someone is, and it is even more difficult to compare the intelligence levels of entire countries, there are some ways that can give us a close estimate. However, ideas about what the best way is have been debated for a long time, with ancient philosophy, modern-day psychology and the social sciences all pointing in different directions.

Recently, new data by the Cleverest Countries Index has been revealed, with fascinating implications regarding several Eastern European countries – reports Hungarians can be proud, as the data shows that

Hungary, Poland and the Czech Republic are all among the most intelligent countries in the world. 

There are three indicators that were taken into account when collecting the data, each one focusing on either the past, present or future intelligence. Regarding the past, the total number of Nobel Prize wins is counted. In the present, the most important indicator is the result of IQ tests. As for the future, achievements in education are regarded.

Based on these variables, Japan is the smartest country in the world, as they have been achieving excellent results in all three aspects for the past few years now. The top five also includes Switzerland, China, the United States and the Netherlands respectively.

Hungary is in respectable 16th place overall on the list, with the best scores coming from the school testing phase.

Poland is a bit behind, in 21st place; however, they are in 15th place together with Austria and Israel when it comes to the number of Nobel Prize wins. The Czech Republic stands in 23rd place, with the 19th highest IQ test scores.

It is interesting to take a look at the divide between the West and the East when it comes to these scores. The West can definitely boast of the highest number of Nobel Prize wins, with the U.S. leading that table with 368 wins. However, this does not come without criticism – the fact that there were only eight laureates from outside the West between 1901 and 1985 shockingly demonstrates the geopolitical and cultural rule of the West in the last century.

smart countries, ranking, list

On the other hand, other variables like the IQ test scores and the school test results favour the East more. Singapore has an impressive 107.1 IQ as a national average, and other Asian countries including China, Hong Kong, South Korea and Taiwan follow closely.

The first European country on the list is Finland, ranked in 7th place.

The ranking regarding school tests shows interesting tendencies. While the West dominated this aspect up until the 1970s, East-Asia has been up and coming since the ‘80s. Today, Singapore is in the first place, with South Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Japan following closely. Russia is in 6th place, while the first European countries on the list are Liechtenstein and Switzerland, in 10th and 11th place respectively.

Nevertheless, the overall results still show a dominant position by Europe. The top 25 on the list include 15 countries from Europe – one of which is Hungary, of course-, seven from Asia, two from North America and one from the Middle East.

For more news, check out this article about the greenest capital cities in Europe.

Featured image: MTI, Tibor Rosta


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