The Human Truth Foundation

Iceland (Republic of Iceland)

By Vexen Crabtree 2013


Comments:
FB, LJ

#charity #climate_change #economics #happiness #humanism #iceland #intelligence #morals #research #scandinavia #science #the_environment

Iceland
Republic of Iceland
StatusIndependent State
CapitalReykjavik
Land Area 100 250km21
LocationEurope, Scandinavia
Population0.3m (2011)2
Life Expectancy82.72yrs (2017)3
GNI$37 065 (2017)4
ISO3166-1 CodesIS, ISL, 3525
Internet Domain.is6
CurrencyKrona (ISK)7
Telephone+3548

1. Overview

#canada #denmark #norway #USA

Settled by Norwegian and Celtic (Scottish and Irish) immigrants during the late 9th and 10th centuries A.D., Iceland boasts the world's oldest functioning legislative assembly, the Althing, established in 930. Independent for over 300 years, Iceland was subsequently ruled by Norway and Denmark. Fallout from the Askja volcano of 1875 devastated the Icelandic economy and caused widespread famine. Over the next quarter century, 20% of the island's population emigrated, mostly to Canada and the US. Denmark granted limited home rule in 1874 and complete independence in 1944. The second half of the 20th century saw substantial economic growth driven primarily by the fishing industry. The economy diversified greatly after the country joined the European Economic Area in 1994, but Iceland was especially hard hit by the global financial crisis in the years following 2008. Literacy, longevity, and social cohesion are first rate by world standards.

CIA's The World Factbook (2013)9

Book CoverA mythical kingdom ruled by elves and Arctic energy, Iceland is where the past meets the future in an elemental symphony of wind, stone, fire and ice. Iceland is, literally, a country in the making -the natural elements work in harmony to power its veritable volcanic laboratory: geysers gush, mudpots gloop, Arctic gales swish along fjords, stone towers rise from the depths of an indigo sea, and glaciers grind their way through lava fields and the merciless tundra. The sublime power of Icelandic nature turns the prosaic into the extraordinary. A dip in the pool becomes a soothing soak in a geothermal lagoon, a casual stroll can transform into a trek across a glittering ice cap, and a quiet night of camping means front-row seats to either the aurora borealis´ curtains of fire, or the soft, pinkish hue of the midnight sun.

It´s hard not to be deeply touched by the island´s beauty - few leave without a pang. Iceland has that effect on people. Perhaps it´s the landscape´s austere bleakness, or maybe it has something to do with the island´s tiny population, but a visit here is as much about the people you meet as it is about the ethereal landscape.

"The World" by Lonely Planet (2014)10

2. Iceland National and Social Development

#human_development

UN HDI (2016)11
Pos.Lower is better
Rank11
1Norway1
2Australia2
3Switzerland2
4Germany4
5Denmark5
6Singapore5
7Netherlands7
8Ireland8
9Iceland9
10Canada10
11USA10
12Hong Kong12
World Avg94.3
q=188.
Social & Moral
Development Index
12
Pos.Higher is better
Points12
1Denmark83.6
2Finland83.1
3Sweden82.6
4Netherlands82.0
5Norway81.9
6Switzerland81.4
7Germany80.6
8New Zealand80.4
9Iceland80.3
10Belgium80.3
11Ireland79.4
12Canada79.2
World Avg55.4
q=198.

The United Nations produces an annual Human Development Report which includes the Human Development Index. The factors taken into account include life expectancy, education and schooling and Gross National Income (GNI) amongst many others..

The Social and Moral Development Index concentrates on moral issues and human rights, violence, public health, equality, tolerance, freedom and effectiveness in climate change mitigation and environmentalism, and on some technological issues. A country scores higher for achieving well in those areas, and for sustaining that achievement in the long term. Those countries towards the top of this index can truly said to be setting good examples and leading humankind onwards into a bright, humane, and free future. See: What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life.

3. Population and Demographics

#birth_control #demographics #health #Iceland #immigration #life_expectancy #longevity #overpopulation #population

Old-Age Dependency Ratio (2016)13
Pos.Lower is better
Per 10013
1Uganda04.3
2Mali04.5
3Chad04.7
...
146Slovakia31.6
147Albania31.8
148Norway32.2
149Iceland32.5
150Serbia32.7
151Hungary32.9
152Romania33.6
153USA33.8
World Avg18.3
q=185.
Emigrants (2010)14
Pos.
%14
1Dominica104.8%
2Palestine68.4%
3Samoa67.3%
...
48Swaziland13.4%
49Lithuania13.2%
50Romania13.1%
51Iceland13.0%
52Bahamas12.8%
53Estonia12.6%
54Nicaragua12.5%
55Latvia12.3%
World Avg11.5%
q=192.

Fertility Rate (2013)15
Pos.2.0 is best15
1N. Korea2.00
2Brunei1.99
3St Vincent & Grenadines2.01
...
13St Lucia1.93
14USA2.08
15Ireland2.10
16Iceland2.10
17Denmark1.88
18Bahamas1.88
19Finland1.87
20UK1.87
World Avg2.81
q=180.

The fertility rate is, in simple terms, the average amount of children that each woman has. The higher the figure, the quicker the population is growing, although, to calculate the rate you also need to take into account morbidity, i.e., the rate at which people die. If people live healthy and long lives and morbidity is low, then, 2.0 approximates to the replacement rate, which would keep the population stable. If all countries had such a fertility rate, population growth would end. The actual replacement rate in most developed countries is around 2.1.

Immigrants (2010)14
Pos.
%14
1Qatar86.5%
2Monaco71.6%
3UAE70.0%
...
43Ukraine11.6%
44Moldova11.4%
45Belarus11.4%
46Iceland11.3%
47UK11.2%
48Ivory Coast11.2%
49Barbados10.9%
50France10.7%
World Avg9.2%
q=192.
Life Expectancy (2015)16
Pos.Higher is better
Years16
1Hong Kong84.16
2Japan83.68
3Italy83.34
4Singapore83.21
5Switzerland83.13
6Spain82.77
7Iceland82.72
8Israel82.56
9Australia82.54
10France82.36
11Sweden82.35
12Canada82.22
World Avg71.27
q=190.
Population (2012)17
Pos.
Population17
1China1.4b
2India1.3b
3USA315.8m
...
168Malta0.4m
169Brunei0.4m
170Bahamas0.4m
171Iceland0.3m
172Maldives0.3m
173Belize0.3m
174Barbados0.3m
175Vanuatu0.3m
World Avg36.0m
q=195.

Iceland's population is predicted to rise to 389 985 by 2030. This country has a fertility rate of 2.10. The fertility rate is, in simple terms, the average amount of children that each woman has. The higher the figure, the quicker the population is growing, although, to calculate the rate you also need to take into account morbidity, i.e., the rate at which people die. If people live healthy and long lives and morbidity is low, then, 2.0 approximates to the replacement rate, which would keep the population stable. If all countries had such a fertility rate, population growth would end. The actual replacement rate in most developed countries is around 2.1.

4. Human Rights, Equality and Freedom

#equality #freedom #human_rights #Iceland #politics #tolerance

When it comes to ensuring human rights and freedom, Iceland leads the world, setting excellent examples. Iceland does the best in terms of its Global Peace Index rating18. It comes in the best 20 in terms of opposing gender inequality19, the year from which women could participate in democracy20, LGBT equality21, supporting press freedom22, fighting corruption23 and in fighting anti-semitic opinions24. And finally, it does better than average in terms of supporting personal, civil & economic freedoms25, its nominal commitment to Human Rights26 and in eliminating modern slavery27.

For tables, charts and commentary, see:

5. Peace Versus Instability

#extremism #human_development #Iceland #peace #politics #religious_violence #terrorism

Peacekeeping and Security (2017)28
Pos.Lower is better
Rank28
1Samoa1
2S. Africa2
3Tunisia3
...
74Jamaica74
75Guyana75
76Fiji76
77Iceland77
78Turkey78
79Georgia79
80Albania80
81Gabon81
World Avg82.0
q=163.
Refugees and UN Treaties (2017)28
Pos.Lower is better
Rank28
1Austria1
2Germany2
3Netherlands3
...
39Turkey39
40Malaysia40
41Montenegro41
42Iceland42
43Hungary43
44Kenya44
45Serbia45
46Bolivia46
World Avg82.0
q=163.

Global Peace Index (2012)18
Pos.Lower is better18
1Iceland1.11
2New Zealand1.24
3Denmark1.24
4Canada1.32
5Japan1.33
6Austria1.33
7Ireland1.33
8Slovenia1.33
9Finland1.35
10Switzerland1.35
11Belgium1.38
12Qatar1.40
World Avg2.02
q=157.

"The 2012 Global Peace Index is the sixth edition of the world's leading study on global levels of peacefulness. The GPI ranks 158 nations using 23 qualitative and quantitative indicators from highly respected sources, which gauge three broad themes: the level of safety and security in society; the extent of domestic or international conflict; and the degree of militarisation. By generating new information on the state of peace at the national and global level, the Institute for Economics and Peace hopes to make a valuable contribution to better understanding how civil society, researchers, policymakers, and government can create a more peaceful society"18. The most peaceable countries in the world are Iceland, New Zealand and Denmark18 and the worst are Somalia, Afghanistan and Sudan18.

Impact of Terrorism (2019)29
Pos.Lower is better
Score29
1Togo0.00
2Mongolia0.00
3Swaziland0.00
...
15Trinidad & Tobago0.02
16Uzbekistan0.02
17Qatar0.03
18Iceland0.03
19Panama0.04
20Guyana0.04
21UAE0.05
22Slovakia0.06
World Avg2.78
q=150.

6. Religion and Beliefs

#belief #buddhism #christianity #god #hinduism #islam #judaism #religion

Disbelief In God (2007)30
Pos.Higher is better
%30
1Vietnam81
2Japan65
3Sweden64
...
29Switzerland17
30Belarus17
31Greece16
32Iceland16
33Spain15
34Israel15
35Armenia14
36Lithuania13
World Avg9.9
q=137.

Data from the Pew Forum, a professional polling outfit, states that in 2010 the religious makeup of this country was as follows in the table below31:

Christian95%
Muslim0.2%
Hindu0.3%
Buddhist0.4%
Folk Religion0.5%
Jew0.1%
Unaffiliated3.5%

By adding up the Pew Forum data for the major monotheistic religions we can see that these make up 95.3% of the population. Yet there are simply too many who disbelieve in God for this to be true (16%). This is due to the so-called 'Census Effect', whereby many put down a religion for cultural reasons rather than because it reflects their beliefs. In highly Christian countries, as many as half of those who say they're a Christian lack any connection to a Church, and do not hold Christian beliefs (such as believing in God!).

The CIA World Factbook has slightly different data, and states: Lutheran Church of Iceland (official) 80.7%, Roman Catholic 2.5%, Reykjavik Free Church 2.4%, Hafnarfjorour Free Church 1.6%, other religions 3.6%, unaffiliated 3%, other or unspecified 6.2% (2006 est.)32.

The International Humanist and Ethical Union produced a report in 2012 entitled "Freedom of Thought" (2012)33, in which they document bias and prejudice at the national level that is based on religion, belief and/or lack of belief. Their entry for Iceland states:

The constitution and other laws and policies protect freedom of religion. However, the state financially supports and promotes Lutheranism as the country's official religion. The Evangelical Lutheran Church (ELC), which is the state church, enjoys some advantages not available to other religion and belief groups. Members of religious communities are allowed to designate part of their income tax to go to their church, but the non-religious have consistently been refused the right to designate their Humanist Association to enjoy the same privilege.

"Freedom of Thought" by IHEU (2012)34

Links:

7. The Internet

#Iceland #internet #the_internet

Internet Users (2016)35
Pos.Higher is better35
1Iceland100%
2Faroe Islands99%
3Norway98%
4Bermuda97%
5Andorra97%
6Denmark96%
7Liechtenstein96%
8Luxembourg95%
9Netherlands94%
10Sweden93%
11Monaco93%
12UK93%
World Avg48.1%
q=201.
IPv6 Uptake (2017)36
Pos.Higher is better
Ratio36
1Belgium55.4
2Germany41.8
3Switzerland35.1
...
57Mexico0.4
58Bhutan0.4
59China0.3
60Iceland0.3
61Turkey0.3
62Uruguay0.3
63Moldova0.3
64UAE0.3
World Avg3.82
q=176.

Internet access has become an essential research tool. It facilitates an endless list of life improvements, from the ability to network and socialize without constraint, to access to a seemingly infinite repository of technical and procedural information on pretty much any task. The universal availability of data has sped up industrial development and personal learning at the national and personal level. Individuals can read any topic they wish regardless of the locality of expert teachers, and, entire nations can develop their technology and understanding of the world simply because they are now exposed to advanced societies and moral discourses online. Like every communications medium, the Internet has issues and causes a small range of problems, but these are insignificant compared to the advantages of having an online populace.

8. Public Health Issues

#alcohol #genetics #health #Iceland #mental_health #obesity #organ_donation #public_health #smoking #sociology #suicide #UK

Iceland does relatively well in encouraging good health, compared to many other countries. Iceland comes in the best 20 for its adolescent birth rate19. It does better than average in number of organ donors37, its food aid and health contributions and WHO compliance28 and in its smoking rate38 (the lowest in Europe). Iceland does not succeed in everything, however. It does worse than average for its suicide rate39 (still low for Europe), its immunizations take-up40, the prevalence of overweight adults41 and in its alcohol consumption rate42 (still low for Europe). The number of overweight adults has increased by 14% between 1976 and 2016.

Alcohol Consumption (2016)42
Pos.Lower is better
Per Capita42
1Bangladesh0.0
2Kuwait0.0
3Libya0.0
...
133Cameroon8.9
134Canada8.9
135Rwanda9.0
136Iceland9.1
137Sweden9.2
138Chile9.3
139Grenada9.3
140S. Africa9.3
World Avg6.2
q=189.

There is nothing wrong with drinking modest and sensible amounts of alcohol but fitness, physical health, mental health and long-term health all suffer as a result of medium- or heavy- drinking43 and the health risks to the baby when pregnant mothers drink44 are well-known. Aside from the effects on the individual, alcohol misuse impacts on entire economies45 via increased health service costs, policing costs and lost days' work. Worldwide, alcohol misuse is "among the top five risk factors for disease, disability and death" and is a "cause of more than 200 disease and injury conditions in individuals, most notably alcohol dependence, liver cirrhosis, cancers and injuries"46. "In 2012... 5.9% of all global deaths, were attributable to alcohol consumption"47. Deaths from chronic alcohol misuse have been rising for decades, and so has violence, abuse, vandalism and crime all associated with alcohol over-use. The aggression and crime associated with alcohol in some Western countries infringes on the human rights of those who want nothing to do with such behaviour. Many of the social effects of alcohol are psychological and cultural; i.e., people don't have to behave criminally or destructively whilst drunk - it is a culturally learned behaviour. Experiments have shown that behaviour can be controlled: Those who do not wish to behave badly whilst drunk, will not do so.

Organ Donors (At Death) (2017)37
Pos.Higher is better
pmp37
1Spain46.9048
2Portugal34.0148
3Belgium33.6248
...
18Australia20.7049
19Uruguay20.43
20Sweden19.00
21Iceland17.30
22Switzerland17.20
23Brazil16.6050
24Denmark16.48
25Hungary16.21
World Avg13.03
q=70.
Food Aid, Health Contributions & WHO Compliance (2017)28
Pos.Lower is better
Rank28
1Sweden1
2Ireland2
3Denmark3
...
38Pakistan38
39Portugal39
40Brazil40
41Iceland41
42El Salvador42
43Russia43
44Turkey44
45Mexico45
World Avg82.0
q=163.

Overweight Adults (2016)41
Pos.Lower is better
%41
1Vietnam18.3
2India19.7
3Bangladesh20.0
...
130Suriname58.9
131Colombia59.0
132Cyprus59.1
133Iceland59.1
134Montenegro59.4
135Belarus59.4
136France59.5
137Belgium59.5
World Avg49.0
q=191.

About one third of the global population is overweight or obese51. Most Western countries are facing an obesity epidemic. Our cultures are having to change to compensate for widespread ill-health. It is costing our health systems a massive amount of money, and is having negative effects on national economies. The situation has persisted for a suitable length of time for our very perceptions to change; opinions on "normal weights" for people and "average sizes" for clothes has shot up52. Over 2 in 3 adults in the UK are overweight52 and this costs the NHS £5.1 billion per year53 and "costs Britain's economy £47bn a year; more than war, terrorism or armed violence"54. We are forgetting how to be healthy.

The causes are not genetic. Most people who say obesity "runs in their family" are wrong. The rate of increase in obesity is many, many times too fast to be accounted for by a change in inherited genes55. Our culture and lifestyle choices are to blame. The causes of the modern obesity epidemic are processed foods, low levels of physical exercise, over-indulgence, poor choices in food products, poor knowledge of nutrition. Most of this is made much worse by well-funded advertising campaigns by food manufacturers selling cheaper mass-produced food. Even some so-called "health foods" contain well over recommended limits of fat, salt and sugar56.

Smoking Rates (2014)38
Pos.Lower is better38
1Guinea 15
2Solomon Islands 26
3Kiribati 28
...
85Cape Verde 515
86Tajikistan 533
87S. Africa 537
88Iceland 551
89Norway 556
90Gabon 559
91Venezuela 565
92Uzbekistan 573
World Avg 819
q=182.
Suicide Rate (2013)39
Pos.Lower is better
Per 100k39
1Haiti0
2Grenada0
3Egypt0.1
...
53USA22.2
54Chile22.4
55Canada22.7
56Iceland23.5
57New Zealand23.6
58Ireland23.7
59Norway23.8
60Denmark23.9
World Avg20.93
q=91.

9. Children's Health

#health #Iceland #parenting #population #vaccines

Adolescent Birth Rate (2015)19
Pos.Lower is better
Per 100019
1N. Korea0.5
2S. Korea1.6
3Switzerland2.9
...
12Norway5.9
13Luxembourg5.9
14Italy6.0
15Iceland6.1
16Libya6.2
17Finland6.5
18Germany6.7
19Maldives6.7
World Avg47.9
q=185.
Infant Immunizations 2011-2015 (2015)40
Pos.Higher is better
Avg %40
1Hungary99.0
2China99.0
3Uzbekistan98.9
...
112Malawi91.7
113Mexico91.6
114Moldova91.5
115Iceland91.5
116Trinidad & Tobago91.4
117Jamaica90.9
118Burkina Faso90.6
119Nepal90.1
World Avg88.3
q=194.

10. More Charts and Comparisons to Other Countries

Personal Charitability
(World Position, 2013-2016)
57
Pos.Lower is better57
1Myanmar (Burma)1.25
2USA1.5
3New Zealand3.5
...
14Norway13.33
15Malta14
16Indonesia14.75
17Iceland16
18Bhutan17.5
19Kenya17.75
20Jamaica20.5
q=156.
Intellectual Endeavours (2017)28
Pos.Lower is better
Rank28
1Ukraine1
2Czechia2
3Hungary3
...
12New Zealand12
13Latvia13
14Bulgaria14
15Iceland15
16Bosnia & Herzegovina16
17Sweden17
18Lithuania18
q=163.
Creativity and Culture (2017)28
Pos.Lower is better
Rank28
1Belgium1
2Netherlands2
3Estonia3
...
34S. Korea34
35New Zealand35
36Belize36
37Iceland37
38Croatia38
39Bulgaria39
40Marshall Islands40
q=163.
Peacekeeping and Security (2017)28
Pos.Lower is better
Rank28
1Samoa1
2S. Africa2
3Tunisia3
...
74Jamaica74
75Guyana75
76Fiji76
77Iceland77
78Turkey78
79Georgia79
80Albania80
q=163.
Refugees and UN Treaties (2017)28
Pos.Lower is better
Rank28
1Austria1
2Germany2
3Netherlands3
...
39Turkey39
40Malaysia40
41Montenegro41
42Iceland42
43Hungary43
44Kenya44
45Serbia45
q=163.
Open Trading, Aid and Development (2017)28
Pos.Lower is better
Rank28
1Ireland1
2Denmark2
3Sweden3
...
102Australia102
103Madagascar103
104Dominica104
105Iceland105
106Bolivia106
107Ghana107
108Mexico108
q=163.
Research and Development (2016)
Pos.Higher is better
% RDP PPP
1S. Korea4.2958
2Israel4.1158
3Japan3.5858
...
16Singapore2.0059
17Czechia2.0058
18Netherlands1.9758
19Iceland1.8958
20Norway1.7058
21UK1.7058
22Canada1.6158
23Ireland1.5258
q=126.
Life Satisfaction (2011)60
Pos.Higher is better60
1Denmark7.8
2Norway7.6
3Netherlands7.6
...
20Belgium6.9
21UK6.9
22Oman6.9
23Iceland6.9
24S. Korea6.9
25Mexico6.8
26Brazil6.8
27El Salvador6.7
q=150.
Gross National Income Per-Capita (2011)16
Pos.Higher is better
PPP $16
1Qatar$129 916
2Singapore$78 162
3Kuwait$76 075
...
26UK$37 931
27Japan$37 268
28Bahrain$37 236
29Iceland$37 065
30S. Korea$34 541
31Oman$34 402
32Italy$33 573
33New Zealand$32 870
q=193.
Environmental Performance (2018)61
Pos.Higher is better61
1Switzerland87.4
2France84.0
3Denmark81.6
...
8Austria79.0
9Ireland78.8
10Finland78.6
11Iceland78.6
12Spain78.4
13Germany78.4
14Norway77.5
15Belgium77.4
q=180.
IQ (2006)62
Pos.Higher is better62
1Hong Kong108
2Singapore108
3S. Korea106
4Japan105
5Taiwan105
6China105
7Italy102
8Iceland101
9Switzerland101
10Mongolia101
11Netherlands100
12Norway100
q=138.