Global vision

World leaders are meeting at the World Economic Forum in Davos, in the Swiss Alps. This annual conference is an opportunity for politicans, economists and businesspeople from around the world to discuss the state of the world economy and to consider policy options.

To coincide with the conference, the BBC’s Newsnight has produced the following slide show, which presents some economic facts about the world economy. The slide show provides no commentary and there is no commentary either in this blog – just some questions for you to ponder.

Using the economics you’ve learned so far, try answering these questions, which focus on the reasons for the patterns in the figures, the likely future patterns and the policy implications.

Slide show
Davos: 22 facts people should know BBC Newsnight (23/1/14)


For additional international data to help you answer the questions, see:
Economic Data freely available online Economics Network


  1. Go through each of the slides in the Newsnight presentation and select the ones of most interest to you. Then, as an economist, provide an explanation for them.
  2. Identify some patterns over time in the statistics. Then project forward 20 years and discuss whether the patterns are likely to have changed and, if so, why.
  3. What policies could governments adopt to reverse any undesirable trends you have identified? How likely are these policies to be implemented and how successful are they likely to be?