Those statistics are the global rate of childhood deaths, the fertility rate and the number of people who escape extreme poverty.
The facts come from Oxford economist Max Roser, the founder of the data and statistics website, OurWorldInData.org.
“One of my favorite websites is OurWorldInData.org. Based at the University of Oxford, it uses statistics — on everything from health and population growth to war, the environment, and energy — to give you phenomenal insight into how living conditions are changing around the world,” says Gates in a post published on his blog Tuesday. “I asked its founder, Oxford economist Max Roser, to share three facts from the site that everyone should know.”
Roser says memorizing a few statistics gives you a framework to more accurately understand the world.
“Yes, for some details, it makes sense to just search for them when you need them. But for the large global developments, it is important to know some basic statistics that describe living conditions currently and the direction of change that we have seen over the past few decades,” says Roser in a piece published on the Gates Notes blog.
“Knowing the facts on global changes gives you the context for the daily news and allows you to make sense of new information that you learn. And it must be the basis for political debate, so that we can discuss what we should and shouldn’t do as a society.”
Here's what Gates and Roser say you need to know: