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A developing country is a
sovereign state A sovereign state is a political entity A polity is an identifiable political entity—any group of people who have a collective identity, who are organized by some form of Institutionalisation, institutionalized social relation, social relatio ...
with a less developed industrial base and a low
Human Development Index The Human Development Index (HDI) is a statistic composite index of life expectancy Life expectancy is a statistical measure of the average time an organism is expected to live, based on the year of its birth, its current age, and ot ...
(HDI) relative to other countries. However, this definition is not universally agreed upon. There is also no clear agreement on which countries fit this category. The term low and middle-income country (LMIC) is often used interchangeably but refers only to the economy of the countries. The World Bank classifies the world's economies into four groups, based on
Gross National Income The gross national income (GNI), previously known as gross national product (GNP), is the total domestic and foreign output claimed by residents of a country, consisting of gross domestic product (GDP Gross domestic product (GDP) is a mone ...
per capita: high, upper-middle, lower-middle, and low income countries.
Least developed countries The least developed countries (LDCs) are a list of developing countries 450px, Example of Older Classifications by the IMF and the United Nations, UN from 2008 A developing country is a country with a less developed industrial base an ...
,
landlocked developing countriesLandlocked developing countries (LLDC) are developing countries that are landlocked. The economic and other disadvantages experienced by such countries makes the majority of landlocked countries Least Developed Countries (LDCs), with inhabitants o ...

landlocked developing countries
and
small island developing states Small Island Developing States (SIDS) are a group of Developing country, developing countries that are small island countries which tend to share similar sustainable development challenges. These include small but growing populations, limited resou ...
are all sub-groupings of developing countries. Countries on the other end of the spectrum are usually referred to as
high-income countries A high-income economy is defined by the World Bank as a nation with a gross national income per capita of US$12,696 or more in 2020, calculated using the Atlas method. While the term "high-income" is often used interchangeably with "First World" and ...
or
developed countries A developed country (or industrialized country, high-income country, more economically developed country (MEDC), advanced country) is a sovereign state A sovereign state is a political entity that is represented by one centralized governmen ...
. There are controversies over this term's use, which some feel perpetuates an outdated concept of "us" and "them". In 2015, the
World Bank The World Bank is an international financial institution An international financial institution (IFI) is a financial institution that has been established (or chartered) by more than one country, and hence is subject to international law. Its o ...
declared that the "developing/developed world categorization" is becoming less relevant and that they will phase out the use of that descriptor. Instead, their reports will present data aggregations for regions and income groups. The term "
Global South The concept of Global North and Global South (or North–South divide in a global context) is used to describe a grouping of countries along socio-economic Socioeconomics (also known as social economics) is the social science that studies ho ...
" is used by some as an alternative term to developing countries. Developing countries tend to have some characteristics in common often due to their histories or geographies. For example, with regards to health risks, they commonly have: low levels of access to safe
drinking water Drinking water, also known as potable water, is water that is safe to drinking, drink or use for food preparation. The amount of drinking water required to maintain good health varies, and depends on physical activity level, age, health-related ...

drinking water
,
sanitation Sanitation refers to public health Public health has been defined as "the science and art of preventing disease", prolonging life and improving quality of life Quality of life (QOL) is defined by the World Health Organization The ...

sanitation
and
hygiene Hygiene is a series of practices performed to preserve health Health, according to the World Health Organization The World Health Organization (WHO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations United Nations Specialized Agencies a ...

hygiene
;
energy poverty Energy poverty is lack of access to modern energy services. It refers to the situation of large numbers of people in developing countries 450px, Example of Older Classifications by the IMF and the United Nations, UN from 2008 A developing c ...
; high levels of
pollution Pollution is the introduction of contaminant Contamination is the presence of a constituent, impurity, or some other undesirable element that spoils, corrupts, infects, makes unfit, or makes inferior a material, physical body, natural en ...

pollution
(e.g.
air pollution Air pollution is the presence of substances in the atmosphere that are harmful to the health of humans and other Outline of life forms, living beings, or cause damage to the climate or to materials. There are different types of air pollutants, ...

air pollution
,
indoor air pollution Indoor air quality (IAQ) is the air quality Air pollution is the presence of substances in the atmosphere An atmosphere (from the greek words ἀτμός ''(atmos)'', meaning 'vapour', and σφαῖρα ''(sphaira)'', meaning 'ball' or ...
,
water pollution Water pollution (or aquatic pollution) is the contamination of water bodies ( Lysefjord) in Norway Norway ( nb, ; nn, ; se, Norga; smj, Vuodna; sma, Nöörje), officially the Kingdom of Norway, is a Nordic countries, Nordic c ...

water pollution
); high proportion of people with tropical and infectious diseases (
neglected tropical diseases Neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) are a diverse group of tropical infections which are common in low-income populations in developing regions of Africa Africa is the world's second-largest and second-most populous continent, after A ...
); a high number of
road traffic accidents A traffic collision, also called a motor vehicle collision, car accident, or car crash, occurs when a vehicle A vehicle (from la, vehiculum) is a machine that transport Transport (commonly used in the U.K.), or transportation (used ...

road traffic accidents
; and generally poor
infrastructure Infrastructure is the set of fundamental facilities and systems that support the sustainable functionality of households and firms. Serving a country, city, or other area, including the services and facilities necessary for its economy An ec ...

infrastructure
. Often, there is also widespread
poverty Poverty is the state of having little material possessions or income In microeconomics, income is the Consumption (economics), consumption and saving opportunity gained by an entity within a specified timeframe, which is generally expresse ...

poverty
, high
crime In ordinary language, a crime is an unlawful act punishable by a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper ...

crime
rates, low
education Education is the process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of knowledge, skills, value (ethics), values, morals, beliefs, habits, and personal development. Educational methods include teaching, training, storytelling, discussion ...

education
levels, inadequate access to
family planning Family planning services are “the ability of individuals and couples to anticipate and attain their desired number of children and the spacing and timing of their births. It is achieved through use of contraceptive methods and the treatment of i ...
services, many
informal settlements Informal housing or informal settlement can include any form of housing Housing, or more generally living spaces, refers to the construction Construction is a general term meaning the art and science to form Physical object, objects, sy ...
,
corruption Corruption is a form of dishonesty Dishonesty is to act without honesty. It is used to describe a lack of probity, cheating, lying, or deliberately withholding information, or being deliberately deceptive or a lack in integrity, knavishness, ...

corruption
at all government levels, and political instability.
Global warming Contemporary climate change includes both the global warming caused by humans, and its impacts on Earth's weather patterns. There have been previous periods of climate change, but the current changes are more rapid than any known even ...
(
climate change Contemporary climate change includes both the global warming caused by humans, and its impacts on Earth's weather patterns. There have been previous periods of climate change, but the current changes are more rapid than any known even ...
) is expected to impact developing countries more than wealthier countries, as most of them have a high " climate vulnerability".
Development aid Development aid is aid In international relations The field of international relations dates from the time of the Ancient Greece, Greek historian Thucydides. International relations (IR), international affairs (IA) or international ...
or development cooperation is financial
aid In international relations International relations (IR), international affairs (IA) or international studies (IS) is the scientific study of interactions between sovereign states. In a broader sense, it concerns all activities betwe ...
given by governments and other agencies to support developing countries' economic, environmental, social, and political
development Development or developing may refer to: Arts *Development hell, when a project is stuck in development *Filmmaking#Development, Filmmaking, development phase, including finance and budgeting *Development (music), the process thematic material i ...
. The
Sustainable Development Goals The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) or Global Goals are a collection of 17 interlinked global goals designed to be a "blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable Sustainability is the capacity to endure in a relatively ongoing w ...

Sustainable Development Goals
by the
United Nations The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organization aiming to maintain international peace and international security, security, develop friendly relations among nations, achieve international cooperation, and be a centre for harm ...

United Nations
were set up to overcome many of these problems.


Definitions


Terms used to classify countries

There are several terms used to classify countries into rough levels of development. Classification of any given country differs across sources, and sometimes these classifications or the specific terminology used is considered disparaging.


By income groups

The World Bank classifies the world's economies into four groups, based on
Gross National Income The gross national income (GNI), previously known as gross national product (GNP), is the total domestic and foreign output claimed by residents of a country, consisting of gross domestic product (GDP Gross domestic product (GDP) is a mone ...
per capita, re-set each year on July 1: # low income countries (similar to least developed countries) # lower-middle income countries # upper-middle income countries #
high income countries A high-income economy is defined by the World Bank The World Bank is an international financial institution An international financial institution (IFI) is a financial institution that has been established (or chartered) by more than one count ...
(similar to
developed countries A developed country (or industrialized country, high-income country, more economically developed country (MEDC), advanced country) is a sovereign state A sovereign state is a political entity that is represented by one centralized governmen ...
) The three groups that are not "high income" are together referred to as "low and middle income countries" (LMICs). This classification is based on
Gross National Income The gross national income (GNI), previously known as gross national product (GNP), is the total domestic and foreign output claimed by residents of a country, consisting of gross domestic product (GDP Gross domestic product (GDP) is a mone ...
(GNI) per capita (current US$) calculated using the
Atlas method The Atlas method is a method used by the World Bank The World Bank is an international financial institution An international financial institution (IFI) is a financial institution that has been established (or chartered) by more than one count ...
. The classification is updated each year on July 1. For example, in July 2019 a high income country was defined as one where the gross national income (GNI) per capita was more than 12,375 (in current US$); a low income country was one where the GNI per capita was less than 1,026 US$. Historical thresholds are documented.


By markets and economic growth

Use of the term "market" instead of "country" usually indicates specific focus on the characteristics of the countries'
capital market A capital market is a financial market A financial market is a market Market may refer to: *Market (economics) *Market economy *Marketplace, a physical marketplace or public market Geography *Märket, an island shared by Finland and Swed ...
s as opposed to the overall economy. *
Developed countries A developed country (or industrialized country, high-income country, more economically developed country (MEDC), advanced country) is a sovereign state A sovereign state is a political entity that is represented by one centralized governmen ...
and
developed market In investing Investment is the dedication of an asset to attain an increase in value over a period of time. Investment requires a sacrifice of some present asset, such as time, money, or effort. In finance, the purpose of investing is to gene ...
s * Developing countries include in decreasing order of economic growth or size of the capital market: **
Newly industrialized countries The category of newly industrialized country (NIC), newly industrialized economy (NIE) or middle income country is a socioeconomic classification applied to several countries around the world by political scientists and economist An econo ...
**
Emerging markets An emerging market (or an emerging country or an emerging economy) is a market that has some characteristics of a developed market In investing, a developed market is a country that is most developed in terms of its economy and capital markets. The ...
**
Frontier marketsA frontier market is a term for a type of developing country 450px, Example of Older Classifications by the IMF and the United Nations, UN from 2008 A developing country is a country with a less developed industrial base and a low Human De ...
**
Least developed countries The least developed countries (LDCs) are a list of developing countries 450px, Example of Older Classifications by the IMF and the United Nations, UN from 2008 A developing country is a country with a less developed industrial base an ...
(also called less economically developed country) Under other criteria, some countries are at an intermediate stage of development, or, as the
International Monetary Fund The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is an international financial institution, headquartered in Washington, D.C. ) , image_skyline = , image_caption = Clockwise from top left: the Washington Monument The ...

International Monetary Fund
(IMF) put it, following the
fall of the Soviet Union The dissolution of the Soviet Union, also negatively connoted as rus, Разва́л Сове́тского Сою́за, r=Razvál Sovétskovo Sojúza, ''Ruining of the Soviet Union''. (1988–1991) was the process of internal political, e ...
, "countries in transition": all those of
Central and Eastern Europe Central and Eastern Europe is a term encompassing the countries in Central Europe, the Baltic states, Baltics, Eastern Europe, and Southeast Europe (also called the Balkans), usually meaning former communist states from the Eastern Bloc and War ...
(including Central European countries that still belonged to the "Eastern Europe Group" in the UN institutions); the former
Soviet Union The Soviet Union,. officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. (USSR),. was a that spanned during its existence from 1922 to 1991. It was nominally a of multiple national ; in practice and were highly until its final years. The ...
(USSR) countries in Central Asia (
Kazakhstan Kazakhstan ( kk, Қазақстан, Qazaqstan; russian: Казахстан, Kazakhstan), officially the Republic of Kazakhstan,; russian: Республика Казахстан, Respublika Kazakhstan, link=no) is a country located mainly in ...

Kazakhstan
,
Uzbekistan Uzbekistan (, ; uz, Ozbekiston, italic=yes, ), officially the Republic of Uzbekistan ( uz, Ozbekiston Respublikasi, italic=yes), is a doubly landlocked country A landlocked country is a country A country is a distinct territory, ter ...

Uzbekistan
,
Kyrgyzstan russian: Киргизская Республика, Kirgizskaya Respublika , image_flag = Flag of Kyrgyzstan.svg , image_coat = Emblem of Kyrgyzstan.svg , symbol_type = Emblem , motto = " ...

Kyrgyzstan
,
Tajikistan ) , image_map = Tajikistan (orthographic projection).svg , map_caption = , capital = Dushanbe Dushanbe ( tg, Душанбе, ; ; russian: Душанбе) is the Capital city, capital and largest ...

Tajikistan
and
Turkmenistan Turkmenistan ( or ; tk, Türkmenistan, ), also known as Turkmenia, is a landlocked A landlocked country is a country that does not have territory connected to an ocean or whose coastlines lie on endorheic basin, endorheic basins. There ar ...

Turkmenistan
); and
Mongolia Mongolia (, mn, Монгол Улс, Mongol Uls, Mongolian script, Traditional Mongolian: '; literal translation, lit. "Mongol Nation" or "State of Mongolia") is a landlocked country in East Asia. It is bordered by Russia Mongolia–Russia ...

Mongolia
. By 2009, the IMF's
World Economic Outlook The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is an international financial institution, headquartered in Washington, D.C. ) , image_skyline = , image_caption = Clockwise from top left: the Washington Monument The ...
classified countries as advanced, emerging, or developing, depending on "(1) per capita income level, (2) export diversification—so oil exporters that have high per capita GDP would not make the advanced classification because around 70% of its exports are oil, and (3) degree of integration into the global financial system".


By geography

Developing countries can also be categorized by geography: *
Small Island Developing States Small Island Developing States (SIDS) are a group of Developing country, developing countries that are small island countries which tend to share similar sustainable development challenges. These include small but growing populations, limited resou ...
(a group of developing countries that are small
island countries An island country or an island nation is a country A country is a distinct territory, territorial body or political entity. It is often referred to as the land of an individual's birth, residence or citizenship. A country may be an indepen ...
which tend to share similar
sustainable development Sustainable development is the organizing principle for meeting human development goals while simultaneously sustaining the ability of natural systems to provide the natural resources and ecosystem services Social forestry in India, Social ...

sustainable development
challenges: small but growing populations, limited resources, remoteness, susceptibility to
natural disaster A natural disaster is a major adverse event An adverse event (AE) is any untoward medical occurrence in a patient or clinical investigation subject administered a pharmaceutical product and which does not necessarily have a causal relations ...
s, vulnerability to external shocks, excessive dependence on
international trade International trade is the exchange of capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the letters that are in larger uppercase or capitals (or more formally ''majuscul ...
, and fragile environments). *
Landlocked Developing CountriesLandlocked developing countries (LLDC) are developing countries that are landlocked. The economic and other disadvantages experienced by such countries makes the majority of landlocked countries Least Developed Countries (LDCs), with inhabitants o ...

Landlocked Developing Countries
(
landlocked countries A landlocked country is a country that does not have territory connected to an ocean or whose coastlines lie on endorheic basins. There are currently 44 landlocked countries and 5 partially recognized landlocked states. Kazakhstan is the wo ...
often experience economic and other disadvantages)


By other parameters

*
Heavily indebted poor countries upright=2, The states recognized as the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC). The heavily indebted poor countries (HIPC) are a group of 39 developing countries 450px, Example of Older Classifications by the IMF and the United Nations, ...

Heavily indebted poor countries
, a definition by a program of the IMF and World Bank *
Transition economy A transition economy or transitional economy is an economy which is changing from a centrally planned economy A planned economy is a type of economic system where investment, production and the allocation of capital goods takes place accor ...
, moving from a centrally planned to market-driven economy * Multi-dimensional clustering system: with the understanding that different countries have different development priorities and levels of access to resources and institutional capacities and to offer a more nuanced understanding of developing countries and their characteristics, scholars have categorized them into five distinct groups based on factors such as levels of poverty and inequality, productivity and innovation, political constraints and dependence on external flows.


By self declaration

In general, the WTO accepts any country's claim of itself being "developing". Certain countries that have become "developed" in the last 20 years by almost all economic metrics, still insist to be classified as "developing country", as it entitle them to a preferential treatment at the
WTO The World Trade Organization (WTO) is an intergovernmental organization that regulates and facilitates international trade between nations. Governments use the organization to establish, revise, and enforce the rules that govern international ...
, countries such as
Brunei Brunei ( ; ), officially the Nation of Brunei, the Abode of Peace ( ms, Negara Brunei Darussalam, Jawi alphabet, Jawi: ), is a sovereign state, country located on the north coast of the island of Borneo in Southeast Asia. Apart from its coa ...

Brunei
,
Hong Kong Hong Kong (; , ), officially the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China (HKSAR), is a city A city is a large human settlement.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Pe ...

Hong Kong
,
Kuwait Kuwait (; ar, الكويت ', or ), officially the State of Kuwait ( ar, دولة الكويت '), is a country in Western Asia Western Asia, West Asia, or Southwest Asia, is the westernmost subregion A subregion is a part of a larger regi ...

Kuwait
,
Macao Macau or Macao (; ; ; ), officially the Macao Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China (MSAR), (RAEM) is a city A city is a large human settlement.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. Lond ...

Macao
,
Qatar Qatar (, , or ; ar, قطر, Qaṭar ; local vernacular pronunciation: ), officially the State of Qatar,) is a country in Western Asia. It occupies the small Qatar Peninsula on the northeastern coast of the Arabian Peninsula, and shares it ...

Qatar
,
Singapore Singapore (), officially the Republic of Singapore, is a sovereign state, sovereign island city-state in maritime Southeast Asia. It lies about one degree of latitude () north of the equator, off the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, bor ...

Singapore
, and the
United Arab Emirates The United Arab Emirates (UAE; ar, الإمارات العربية المتحدة ) or the Emirates ( ar, الإمارات ), is a country in Western Asia Western Asia, West Asia, or Southwest Asia, is the westernmost subregion A subregio ...

United Arab Emirates
have been cited and criticized for this self-declared status.


Measure and concept of development

Development can be measured by economic or human factors. Developing countries are, in general, countries that have not achieved a significant degree of
industrialization Industrialisation ( alternatively spelled industrialization) is the period of social and economic change that transforms a human group from an agrarian society An agrarian society, or agricultural society, is any community whose economy is b ...
relative to their populations, and have, in most cases, a medium to low
standard of living Standard of living is the level of income, comforts and services available, generally applied to a society or location, rather than to an individual. Standard of living is relevant because it is considered to contribute to an individual's quality ...
. There is an association between low income and high population growth. The development of a country is measured with statistical indices such as income
per capita ''Per capita'' is a Latin phrase literally meaning "by heads" or "for each head", and idiomatically used to mean "per person". The term is used in a wide variety of social sciences Social science is the branch The branches and leaves o ...
(per person),
gross domestic product Gross domestic product (GDP) is a monetary Image:National-Debt-Gillray.jpeg, In a 1786 James Gillray caricature, the plentiful money bags handed to King George III are contrasted with the beggar whose legs and arms were amputated, in the ...
per capita,
life expectancy Life expectancy is a statistical measure of the average time an organism is expected to live, based on the year of its birth, its current age, and other demographic Demography (from prefix ''demo-'' from Ancient Greek Ancien ...

life expectancy
, the rate of literacy, freedom index and others. The UN has developed the
Human Development Index The Human Development Index (HDI) is a statistic composite index of life expectancy Life expectancy is a statistical measure of the average time an organism is expected to live, based on the year of its birth, its current age, and ot ...
(HDI), a compound indicator of some of the above statistics, to gauge the level of human development for countries where data is available. The UN had set
Millennium Development Goals The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) were eight international development goals for the year 2015 that had been established following the Millennium Summit of the United Nations in 2000, following the adoption of the United Nations Millennium ...
from a blueprint developed by all of the world's countries and leading development institutions, in order to evaluate growth. These goals ended in 2015, to be superseded by the
Sustainable Development Goals The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) or Global Goals are a collection of 17 interlinked global goals designed to be a "blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable Sustainability is the capacity to endure in a relatively ongoing w ...

Sustainable Development Goals
. The concept of the developing nation is found, under one term or another, in numerous theoretical systems having diverse orientations — for example, theories of
decolonization Decolonization (American American(s) may refer to: * American, something of, from, or related to the United States of America, commonly known as the United States The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States ( ...
,
liberation theology Liberation theology is a Christian theological Christian theology is the theology Theology is the systematic study of the nature of the Divinity, divine and, more broadly, of religious belief. It is taught as an Discipline (academia), aca ...
,
Marxism Marxism is a method of socioeconomic Socioeconomics (also known as social economics) is the social science that studies how economic activity affects and is shaped by social processes. In general it analyzes how modern society, societies soci ...
,
anti-imperialism Anti-imperialism in political science Political science is the scientific study of politics Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with making decisions In psychology, decision-making (also spelled decision ma ...
,
modernization Modernization theory is used to explain the process of modernization within societies. Modernization theory originated from the ideas of German sociologist Max Weber Maximilian Karl Emil Weber (; ; 21 April 186414 June 1920) was a German socio ...
,
social change Social change involves alteration of the social order The term social order can be used in two senses: In the first sense, it refers to a particular system of social structures and institution Institutions, according to Samuel P. Huntingt ...
and
political economy Political economy is the study of production Production may be: Economics and business * Production (economics) * Production, the act of manufacturing goods * Production, in the outline of industrial organization, the act of making products ( ...
. Another important indicator is the sectoral changes that have occurred since the stage of development of the country. On an average, countries with a 50% contribution from the
secondary sector In macroeconomics Macroeconomics (from the Greek prefix ''makro-'' meaning "large" + ''economics'') is a branch of economics Economics () is the social science that studies how people interact with value; in particular, the Production ...
(
manufacturing Manufacturing is the creation or Production (economics), production of goods with the help of equipment, Work (human activity), labor, machines, tools, and chemical or biological processing or formulation. It is the essence of secondary sector ...
) have grown substantially. Similarly countries with a
tertiary sector The tertiary sector of the economy, generally known as the service sector, is the third of the three economic sector Image:Economic sectors and income.JPG, 250px, Percentages of a country's economy made up by different sectors. Countries with h ...
stronghold also see a greater rate of
economic development In the economic An economy (; ) is an area of the production Production may be: Economics and business * Production (economics) * Production, the act of manufacturing goods * Production, in the outline of industrial organization, the act o ...
.


Criticisms and related terms

There is criticism for using the term "developing country". The term could imply inferiority of this kind of country compared with a
developed country A developed country (or industrialized country, high-income country, more economically developed country (MEDC), advanced country) is a sovereign state A sovereign state is a polity, political entity represented by one centralized governm ...
. It could assume a desire to develop along the traditional Western model of
economic development In the economic An economy (; ) is an area of the production Production may be: Economics and business * Production (economics) * Production, the act of manufacturing goods * Production, in the outline of industrial organization, the act o ...
which a few countries, such as
Cuba Cuba ( , ), officially the Republic of Cuba ( es, República de Cuba, links=no ), is a country comprising the island of Cuba, as well as Isla de la Juventud Isla de la Juventud (; en, Isle of Youth) is the second-largest Cuban islan ...

Cuba
and
Bhutan Bhutan (; dz, འབྲུག་ཡུལ་, Druk Yul, ), officially known as the Kingdom of Bhutan ( dz, འབྲུག་རྒྱལ་ཁབ་, Druk Gyal Khap), is a landlocked country in the Eastern Himalayas. It is bordered by Chin ...

Bhutan
, choose not to follow. Alternative measurements such as
gross national happiness Gross National Happiness (GNH), sometimes called Gross Domestic Happiness (GDH), is a philosophy Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and fundamental questions, such as those about existence Existence is the ability of an entity t ...
have been suggested as important indicators. One of the early criticism that questioned the use of the terms "developing" and "underdeveloped" countries, was voiced in 1973 by prominent historian and academic
Walter Rodney Walter Anthony Rodney (23 March 1942 – 13 June 1980) was a prominent Guyanese historian, political activist and academic. He was assassinated in 1980. Early career Walter Rodney was born in 1942 into a working-class family. He attended th ...
who compared the economic, social and political parameters between the United States and countries in Africa and Asia. There is "no established convention" for defining "developing country". According to
economist An economist is a professional and practitioner in the social science Social science is the branch A branch ( or , ) or tree branch (sometimes referred to in botany Botany, also called , plant biology or phytology, is the s ...

economist
and sustainable development expert
Jeffrey Sachs Jeffrey David Sachs (; born November 5, 1954) is an American economist, academic, public policy analyst and former director of The Earth Institute at Columbia University, where he holds the title of University Professor (Columbia), University Profe ...
, the current divide between the
developed Development or developing may refer to: Arts *Development hell, when a project is stuck in development *Filmmaking#Development, Filmmaking, development phase, including finance and budgeting *Development (music), the process thematic material i ...
and developing world is largely a phenomenon of the 20th century. The late global health expert
Hans Rosling Hans Rosling (; 27 July 1948 – 7 February 2017) was a Swedish physician, academic, and public speaker. He was a professor of international health at Karolinska Institute and was the co-founder and chairman of the Gapminder Foundation, which deve ...
has argued against the terms, calling the concept "outdated" since the terms are used under the prerequisite that the world is divided in rich and poor countries, while the fact is that the vast majority of countries are middle-income. Given the lack of a clear definition, sustainability expert
Mathis Wackernagel Mathis Wackernagel is a Swiss Swiss may refer to: * the adjectival form of Switzerland *Swiss people Places *Swiss, Missouri *Swiss, North Carolina *Swiss, West Virginia *Swiss, Wisconsin Other uses *Swiss-system tournament, in various games an ...
and founder of
Global Footprint Network Global Footprint Network, founded in 2003, is an independent think tank A think tank, or policy institute, is a research institute A research institute, research centre, or research center is an establishment founded for doing research. Resear ...
, emphasizes that the binary labeling of countries is "neither descriptive nor explanatory". Wackernagel and Rosling both argue that in reality, there are not two types of countries, but over 200 different countries, all faced with the same laws of nature, yet each with unique features. The term "developing" refers to a current situation and not a changing dynamic or expected direction of development. Since the late 1990s, countries identified by the UN as developing countries tended to demonstrate higher growth rates than those in the developed countries category. To moderate the
euphemistic A euphemism () is an innocuous word or expression used in place of one that is deemed Profanity, offensive or suggests something unpleasant. Some euphemisms are intended to amuse, while others use bland, inoffensive terms for concepts that the us ...
aspect of the word "developing",
international organization An international organization (also known as an international institution or intergovernmental organization) is a stable set of norms and rules meant to govern the behavior of states and other actors in the international system. Organizations ...
s have started to use the term less economically developed country for the poorest nations—which can, in no sense, be regarded as developing. This highlights that the standard of living across the entire developing world varies greatly. In 2015, the
World Bank The World Bank is an international financial institution An international financial institution (IFI) is a financial institution that has been established (or chartered) by more than one country, and hence is subject to international law. Its o ...
declared that the "developing / developed world categorization" is becoming less relevant, due to worldwide improvements in indices such as child mortality rates, fertility rates and extreme poverty rates. In the 2016 edition of its World Development Indicators, the
World Bank The World Bank is an international financial institution An international financial institution (IFI) is a financial institution that has been established (or chartered) by more than one country, and hence is subject to international law. Its o ...
made a decision to no longer distinguish between "developed" and "developing" countries in the presentation of its data, considering the two-category distinction outdated. Accordingly, World Bank is phasing out use of that descriptor. Instead, the reports by Worldbank (such as the World Development Indicators (WDI) and the Global Monitoring Report) now include data aggregations for the whole world, for regions, and for income groups – but not for the “developing world”.


Third World

Over the past few decades since the
fall of the Soviet Union The dissolution of the Soviet Union, also negatively connoted as rus, Разва́л Сове́тского Сою́за, r=Razvál Sovétskovo Sojúza, ''Ruining of the Soviet Union''. (1988–1991) was the process of internal political, e ...
and the
end of the Cold War End, END, Ending, or variation, may refer to: End *In mathematics: ** End (category theory) ** End (topology) ** End (graph theory) ** End (group theory) (a subcase of the previous) **End (endomorphism) *In sports and games **End (gridiron footbal ...
, the term ''
Third World The term "Third World" arose during the Cold War to define countries that remained non-aligned with either NATO or the Warsaw Pact. The United States, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Western European nations and their allies represented the "First Wor ...

Third World
'' has been used interchangeably with developing countries, but the concept has become outdated in recent years as it no longer represents the current political or economic state of the world. The
three-world model The terms ''First World'', ''Second World'', and ''Third World'' were originally used to divide the world's nations into three categories. The complete overthrow of the post–World War II status quo, known as the Cold War, left two (originally ...
arose during the
Cold War The Cold War was a period of geopolitical Geopolitics (from Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country loc ...
to define countries aligned with
NATO The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO, ; french: Organisation du traité de l'Atlantique nord, ), also called the North Atlantic Alliance, is an intergovernmental military alliance A military alliance is a formal agreement betwe ...
(the
First World The concept of First World originated during the Cold War The Cold War was a period of geopolitical tension between the Soviet Union The Soviet Union,. officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. (USSR),. was a Federalism, ...
), the Communist Bloc (the
Second World The Second World is a term used during the Cold War The Cold War was a period of geopolitical tension between the Soviet Union The Soviet Union,. officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. (USSR),. was a Federalism, federa ...
, although this term was less used), or neither (the Third World). Strictly speaking, "Third World" was a political, rather than an economic, grouping.


Global South

The term "
Global South The concept of Global North and Global South (or North–South divide in a global context) is used to describe a grouping of countries along socio-economic Socioeconomics (also known as social economics) is the social science that studies ho ...
" began to be used more widely since about 2004. It can also include poorer "southern" regions of wealthy "northern" countries. The Global South refers to these countries' "interconnected histories of
colonialism Colonialism is a practice or policy of control by one people or power over other people or areas, often by establishing colony, colonies and generally with the aim of economic dominance. In the process of colonisation, colonisers may impose the ...

colonialism
,
neo-imperialism In history, historical contexts, New Imperialism characterizes a period of colonization, colonial expansion by Great powers, Western European powers, the American imperialism, United States, Russian Empire, Russia and Empire of Japan, Japan du ...
, and differential economic and social change through which large inequalities in living standards, life expectancy, and access to resources are maintained".


Associated theories

The term "developing countries" has many research theories associated with it (in chronological order): *
Modernization theory Modernization theory is used to explain the process of modernization within societies. Modernization theory originated from the ideas of German sociologist Max Weber Maximilian Karl Emil Weber (; ; 21 April 186414 June 1920) was a German Soci ...
- to explain the process of modernization within societies *
Dependency theory Dependency theory is of the notion that resources flow from a "periphery Periphery or Peripheral may refer to: *Periphery (band), American progressive metal band *Periphery (album), ''Periphery'' (album), released in 2010 by Periphery *Periphery ...

Dependency theory
– the notion that resources flow from a "periphery" of poor and underdeveloped states to a "core" of wealthy states, enriching the latter at the expense of the former * Development theory – a collection of Theory, theories about how desirable change in society is best achieved. * Postdevelopment theory, Post-Development theory – holds that the whole concept and practice of
development Development or developing may refer to: Arts *Development hell, when a project is stuck in development *Filmmaking#Development, Filmmaking, development phase, including finance and budgeting *Development (music), the process thematic material i ...
is a reflection of Western-Northern hegemony over the rest of the world


Common characteristics


Government, politics and administration

Many developing countries have only attained full self-determination and democracy after the second half of the 20th century. Many were governed by an imperial European power until
decolonization Decolonization (American American(s) may refer to: * American, something of, from, or related to the United States of America, commonly known as the United States The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States ( ...
. Political systems in developing countries are diverse, but most states had established some form of Democracy, democratic governments by the early 21st century, with varying degrees of success and political liberty. The inhabitants of developing countries were introduced to democratic systems later and more abruptly than their Northern counterparts and were sometimes targeted by governmental and non-governmental efforts to encourage participation. 'Effective citizenship' is defined by sociologist Patrick Heller as: "closing [the] gap between formal legal rights in the civil and political arena, and the actual capability to meaningfully practice those rights". Beyond citizenship, the study of the politics of cross-border mobility in developing countries has also shed valuable light in Human migration, migration debates, seen as a corrective to the traditional focus on developed countries. Some political scientists identify a 'typology of nationalizing, developmental, and neoliberal migration management regimes' across developing countries.


Economy

Following independence and
decolonization Decolonization (American American(s) may refer to: * American, something of, from, or related to the United States of America, commonly known as the United States The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States ( ...
in the 20th century, most developing countries had dire need of new
infrastructure Infrastructure is the set of fundamental facilities and systems that support the sustainable functionality of households and firms. Serving a country, city, or other area, including the services and facilities necessary for its economy An ec ...

infrastructure
, Industry (economics), industry and economic stimulation. Many relied on foreign investment. This funding focused on improving infrastructure and industry, but led to a system of systemic exploitation. They exported raw materials, such as rubber, for a bargain. Companies based in the Western world have often used the cheaper labor in developing countries for production. The West benefited significantly from this system, but left developing countries undeveloped. This arrangement is sometimes called neocolonialism, meaning a system in which less-developed countries are taken advantage of by developed countries. It does not necessarily mean that former colonies are still controlled by their former colonizer; it refers to colonial-like exploitation. Developing countries are often helping further develop rich countries, rather than being developed themselves. Several institutions have been established with the goal of putting an end to this system. One of these institutions is the New International Economic Order. They have a 'no-strings-attached' policy that promotes developing countries remaining or becoming self-sufficient. More specifically, they advocate sovereignty over natural resources and industrialization. Coalitions of developing nations, like the NIEO, frequently lobby for parity in the world stage. The rise of China might imply the rise of the BRIC, BRIC countries.


Common challenges

The global issues most often discussed by developing countries include globalisation, global health governance, health, and prevention needs. This is contrasted by issues developed nations tend to address, such as innovations in science and technology. Most developing countries have these criteria in common:UN-OHRLL
Criteria for Identification and Graduation of LDCs
* High levels of
poverty Poverty is the state of having little material possessions or income In microeconomics, income is the Consumption (economics), consumption and saving opportunity gained by an entity within a specified timeframe, which is generally expresse ...

poverty
– measured based on Gross national income, GNI per capita averaged over three years. For example, if the GNI per capita is less than US$1,025 (as of 2018) the country is regarded as a least developed country. *Human resources, Human resource weakness (based on indicators of nutrition, health, education and adult literacy). *Economic Vulnerability Index, Economic vulnerability (based on instability of agricultural production, instability of exports of goods and services, economic importance of non-traditional activities, merchandise export concentration, handicap of economic smallness, and the percentage of population displaced by natural disasters).


Urban slums

According to United Nations Human Settlements Programme, UN-Habitat, around 33% of the urban population in the developing world in 2012, or about 863 million people, lived in slums. In 2012, the proportion of urban population living in slums was highest in Sub-Saharan Africa (62%), followed by South Asia (35%), Southeast Asia (31%) and East Asia (28%). The UN-Habitat reports that 43% of urban population in developing countries and 78% of those in the least developed countries are slum dwellers.The challenge of slums – Global report on Human Settlements
, United Nations Habitat (2003)
Slums form and grow in different parts of the world for many different reasons. Causes include rapid Urbanization, rural-to-urban migration, economic stagnation and depression, high unemployment, poverty, Informal sector, informal economy, forced or manipulated ghettoization, poor planning, politics, natural disasters and social conflicts. For example, as populations expand in poorer countries, rural people are moving to cities in an extensive urban migration that is resulting in the creation of slums. In some cities, especially in countries in Southern Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa, slums are not just marginalized neighborhoods holding a small population; slums are widespread, and are home to a large part of urban population. These are sometimes called "slum cities".


Violence against women

Several forms of violence against women are more prevalent in developing countries than in other parts of the world. For example, dowry death, dowry violence and bride burning is associated with Bangladesh, and Nepal. Acid throwing is also associated with these countries, as well as in Southeast Asia, including Cambodia. Honor killing is associated with the Middle East and South Asia. Marriage by abduction is found in Ethiopia, Central Asia and the Caucasus. Abuse related to payment of bride price (such as violence, trafficking and forced marriage) is linked to parts of Sub-Saharan Africa and Oceania. Female genital mutilation (FGM) is another form of violence against women which is still occurring in many developing countries. It is found mostly in Africa, and to a lesser extent in the Middle East and some other parts of Asia. Developing countries with the highest rate of women who have been cut are Somalia (with 98% of women affected), Guinea (96%), Djibouti (93%), Egypt (91%), Eritrea (89%), Mali (89%), Sierra Leone (88%), Sudan (88%), Gambia (76%), Burkina Faso (76%), and Ethiopia (74%). Due to globalization and immigration, FGM is spreading beyond the borders of Africa and Middle East, to countries such as Australia, Belgium, Canada, France, New Zealand, the U.S., and UK. The Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence, Istanbul Convention prohibits female genital mutilation (Article 38). As of 2016, FGM has been legally banned in many African countries. According to UN Women facts and figures on ending violence against women, it is estimated that 35 percent of women worldwide have experienced either physical and sexual violence by intimate partners or sexual violence by a non-partner (not including sexual harassment) at some point in their lives. Evidence shows women who have had experienced physical or sexual violence, sexual intimate partner violence report higher rates of depression, having an abortion and acquiring HIV, compared to women who have not had experienced any physical or sexual violence. Data from multi-country from Middle East and North Africa shows that men who witnessed their fathers against their mothers, and men who experienced some form of violence as children, more likely have reported perpetrating intimate partner violence in their adult relationships.


Healthcare and public health

The comparison in healthcare between developing countries and developed countries is substantially different. People in developing countries usually have a lower
life expectancy Life expectancy is a statistical measure of the average time an organism is expected to live, based on the year of its birth, its current age, and other demographic Demography (from prefix ''demo-'' from Ancient Greek Ancien ...

life expectancy
than people in developed countries. The burden of infectious diseases, Maternal death, maternal mortality, child mortality and infant mortality are typically substantially higher. Undernutrition is more common in developing countries. Certain groups have higher rates of undernutrition, including women—in particular while pregnant or breastfeeding—children under five years of age, and the elderly. Undernutrition in children, Malnutrition in children and stunted growth of children is the cause for more than 200 million children under five years of age in developing countries not reaching their developmental potential. About 165 million children were estimated to have stunted growth from malnutrition in 2013. In some developing countries, overnutrition in the form of obesity is beginning to present within the same communities as undernutrition. The following list shows the further significant environmentally-related causes or conditions, as well as certain diseases with a strong environmental component: * Illness/disease (malaria, tuberculosis, AIDS, etc.): Illness imposes high and regressive cost burdens on families in developing countries. * Tropical and infectious diseases (
neglected tropical diseases Neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) are a diverse group of tropical infections which are common in low-income populations in developing regions of Africa Africa is the world's second-largest and second-most populous continent, after A ...
) * Unsafe
drinking water Drinking water, also known as potable water, is water that is safe to drinking, drink or use for food preparation. The amount of drinking water required to maintain good health varies, and depends on physical activity level, age, health-related ...

drinking water
, poor
sanitation Sanitation refers to public health Public health has been defined as "the science and art of preventing disease", prolonging life and improving quality of life Quality of life (QOL) is defined by the World Health Organization The ...

sanitation
and hygiene * Indoor air pollution in developing nations * Pollution (e.g.
air pollution Air pollution is the presence of substances in the atmosphere that are harmful to the health of humans and other Outline of life forms, living beings, or cause damage to the climate or to materials. There are different types of air pollutants, ...

air pollution
,
water pollution Water pollution (or aquatic pollution) is the contamination of water bodies ( Lysefjord) in Norway Norway ( nb, ; nn, ; se, Norga; smj, Vuodna; sma, Nöörje), officially the Kingdom of Norway, is a Nordic countries, Nordic c ...

water pollution
) * Motor vehicle collisions * Unintentional poisoning * Non communicable diseases and weak Health care, healthcare systems


Water, sanitation, hygiene (WASH)

Access to water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) services is at very low levels in many developing countries. In 2015 the World Health Organization (WHO) estimated that "1 in 3 people, or 2.4 billion, are still without sanitation facilities" while 663 million people still lack access to safe and clean drinking water. The estimate in 2017 by Joint Monitoring Programme for Water Supply and Sanitation, JMP states that 4.5 billion people currently do not have safely managed sanitation. The majority of these people live in developing countries. About 892 million people or 12 per cent of the global population, practiced open defecation instead of using toilets in 2016.WHO and UNICEF (2017
Progress on Drinking Water, Sanitation and Hygiene: 2017 Update and SDG Baselines
Geneva: World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), 2017
Seventy-six per cent (678 million) of the 892 million people practicing open defecation in the world live in just seven countries. Countries with a high number of people openly defecating are India (348 million), followed by Nigeria (38.1 million), Indonesia (26.4 million), Ethiopia (23.1 million), Pakistan (19.7 million), Niger (14.6 million) and Sudan (9.7 million). Sustainable Development Goal 6 is one of 17
Sustainable Development Goals The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) or Global Goals are a collection of 17 interlinked global goals designed to be a "blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable Sustainability is the capacity to endure in a relatively ongoing w ...

Sustainable Development Goals
established by the UN in 2015. It calls for clean water and sanitation for all people. This is particularly relevant for people in developing countries.


Energy

In 2009, about 1.4 billion of people in the world lived without electricity. 2.7 billion relied on wood, charcoal, and dung (dry animal dung fuel) for home energy requirements. This lack of access to modern energy technology limits income generation, blunts efforts to escape poverty, affects people's health due to indoor air pollution, and contributes to global deforestation and climate change. Small-scale renewable energy technologies and distributed energy options, such as onsite solar power and improved cookstoves, offer rural households modern energy services. Renewable energy in developing countries, Renewable energy can be particularly suitable for developing countries. In rural and remote areas, transmission and distribution of energy generated from fossil fuels can be difficult and expensive. Producing renewable energy locally can offer a viable alternative.Power for the People
p. 3.
Renewable energy can directly contribute to poverty alleviation by providing the energy needed for creating businesses and employment. Renewable energy technologies can also make indirect contributions to alleviating poverty by providing energy for cooking, space heating, and lighting.Energy for Development: The Potential Role of Renewable Energy in Meeting the Millennium Development Goals
pp. 7–9.
Kenya is the world leader in the number of solar power systems installed per capita.


Pollution


Water pollution

Water pollution is a major problem in many developing countries. It requires ongoing evaluation and revision of water resource policy at all levels (international down to individual aquifers and wells). It has been suggested that water pollution is the leading worldwide cause of death and diseases, and that it accounts for the deaths of more than 14,000 people daily. India and China are two countries with high levels of water pollution: An estimated 580 people in India die of water pollution related illness (including waterborne diseases) every day. About 90 percent of the Water resources of China, water in the cities of China is polluted. As of 2007, half a billion Chinese had no access to safe drinking water. Further details of water pollution in several countries, including many developing countries:


Indoor air pollution

Indoor air pollution in developing nations is a major health hazard. A major source of indoor air pollution in developing countries is the burning of biomass. Three billion people in developing countries across the globe rely on biomass in the form of wood, charcoal, Manure, dung, and crop residue, as their domestic cooking fuel. Because much of the cooking is carried out indoors in environments that lack proper ventilation, millions of people, primarily poor women and children face serious health risks. Globally, 4.3 million deaths were attributed to exposure to IAP in developing countries in 2012, almost all in low and middle income countries. The South East Asian and Western Pacific regions bear most of the burden with 1.69 and 1.62 million deaths, respectively. Almost 600,000 deaths occur in Africa. An earlier estimate from 2000 put the death toll between 1.5 million and 2 million deaths. Finding an affordable solution to address the many effects of indoor air pollution is complex. Strategies include improving combustion, reducing smoke exposure, improving safety and reducing labor, reducing fuel costs, and addressing sustainability.


Climate change


Particular vulnerability to climate change

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has confirmed that warming of the climate system due to human intervention is 'unequivocal'. The effects of climate change will be felt around the globe and will result in events such as Extreme weather, extreme weather events, droughts, floods, biodiversity loss, disease and sea level rise, which are dangerous for societies and the environment. Although 79% of carbon emissions is produced by developed countries, and developing countries have not been the major cause of climate change, they are the most at risk from the effects of these changes and may face challenges in Climate change adaptation, adapting to climate change due to the intersecting issues of high climate vulnerability, low economic status, restricted access to technology, failing infrastructure and limited access to financial resources. Where a country is particularly Climate change vulnerability, vulnerable to climate change they are called "highly climate vulnerable". This applies to many countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, fragile states or failed states like Afghanistan, Haiti, Myanmar, and Somalia, as well as to
Small Island Developing States Small Island Developing States (SIDS) are a group of Developing country, developing countries that are small island countries which tend to share similar sustainable development challenges. These include small but growing populations, limited resou ...
. In the cases where developing countries produce only small quantities of greenhouse gas emissions per capita but are very vulnerable to the negative effects of global warming, the term "forced riders" as opposed to the "free riders" has been used as a descriptor. Such countries include Comoros, The Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, São Tomé and Príncipe, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu. Climate vulnerability has been quantified in the Climate Vulnerability Monitor reports of 2010 and 2012. Climate vulnerability in developing countries occurs in four impact areas: health, extreme weather, habitat loss, and economic stress. A report by the Climate Vulnerability Monitor in 2012 estimated that climate change causes 400,000 deaths on average each year, mainly due to hunger and communicable diseases in developing countries. These effects are most severe for the world's poorest countries. Internationally there is recognition of the mismatch between those that have caused climate change and those which will suffer the most from climate change, termed "climate justice". It has been a topic for discussion at some of the United Nations Climate Change conference, United Nations Climate Change Conferences (COP). “When we think about livelihoods at risk from climate change impacts, we know that people living in developing countries, and especially the least-developed countries and small island states, often have the least financial resources to adapt," says Nancy Saich, the European Investment Bank’s chief climate change expert.


Impacts

A changing climate also results in economic burdens. The economies in Least Developed Countries have lost an average of 7% of their
gross domestic product Gross domestic product (GDP) is a monetary Image:National-Debt-Gillray.jpeg, In a 1786 James Gillray caricature, the plentiful money bags handed to King George III are contrasted with the beggar whose legs and arms were amputated, in the ...
for the year 2010, mainly due to reduced Workforce productivity, labor productivity. Rising sea levels cost 1% of GDP to the least developed countries in 2010 – 4% in the Pacific – with 65 billion dollars annually lost from the world economy. Another example is the impact on Fishery, fisheries: approximately 40 countries are acutely vulnerable to the impact of Greenhouse gas, greenhouse gas emissions on fisheries. Developing countries with large fisheries sectors are particularly affected. During the 2010 United Nations Climate Change Conference, Cancún COP16 in 2010, List of development aid country donors, donor countries promised an annual $100 billion by 2020 through the Green Climate Fund for developing countries to adapt to climate change. However, concrete pledges by developed countries have not been forthcoming. Emmanuel Macron (President of France) said at the 2017 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Bonn (COP 23): "Climate change adds further injustice to an already unfair world".Damian Carrington
"Climate change will determine humanity's destiny, says Angela Merkel"
''The Guardian'', 15 November 2017 (page visited on 15 November 2017).
Economic development and climate are inextricably linked, particularly around poverty, gender equality, and energy. Tackling climate change will only be possible if the
Sustainable Development Goals The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) or Global Goals are a collection of 17 interlinked global goals designed to be a "blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable Sustainability is the capacity to endure in a relatively ongoing w ...

Sustainable Development Goals
(SDGs) are met, in particular Sustainable Development Goal 13 on Individual and political action on climate change, climate action. Climate stress is likely to add to existing Human migration, migration patterns in developing countries and beyond but is not expected to generate entirely new flows of people., p. 109, . A report by the
World Bank The World Bank is an international financial institution An international financial institution (IFI) is a financial institution that has been established (or chartered) by more than one country, and hence is subject to international law. Its o ...
in 2018 estimated that around 143 million people in three regions (Sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia, and Latin America) could be forced to move within their own countries to escape the slow-onset impacts of climate change. They will migrate from less viable areas with lower water availability and Agricultural productivity, crop productivity and from areas affected by rising sea level and storm surges. In spite of the cumulative stressors and challenges faced by developing countries in adapting to the effects of climate change, there are those that are world leaders in the field such as Bangladesh. Bangladesh created a national programme in 2009 focused on Climate change in Bangladesh, how the country would adapt to climate change (the first country to do so). It established a fund to support these plans, spending on average $1 billion annually in this regard.


Population growth

Over the last few decades, global population growth has largely been driven by developing countries, which often have higher birth rates (higher fecundity rate) than developed countries. According to the United Nations,
family planning Family planning services are “the ability of individuals and couples to anticipate and attain their desired number of children and the spacing and timing of their births. It is achieved through use of contraceptive methods and the treatment of i ...
can help to slow population growth and decrease poverty in these countries. The violent herder–farmer conflicts in Nigeria, the March 2019 attacks against Fulani herders in Mali, the Sudanese nomadic conflicts and other conflicts in the countries of the Sahel region have been exacerbated by climate change, land degradation, and population growth. Droughts and food shortages have been also linked to the Northern Mali conflict.


Poor governance

Many developing countries are considered un-free or flawed democracies by freedom indices such as the Democracy Index, Freedom in the World and Index of Freedom in the World and Following decolonization and independence, elites have often had Oligarchy, oligarchic control of the government. The establishment of a healthy democratic state has often been challenged by widespread
corruption Corruption is a form of dishonesty Dishonesty is to act without honesty. It is used to describe a lack of probity, cheating, lying, or deliberately withholding information, or being deliberately deceptive or a lack in integrity, knavishness, ...

corruption
and nepotism and a low confidence and participation in democratic process. Political instability and political corruption are common problems.Edwards, S. "Trade Orientation, Distortions and Growth In Developing Countries." (n.d.): n. pag. 1–37 To fully reach the goal of a low level of corruption, developing countries are usually using special steps for different establishments inside their territories, such as : * Development or creation of a fair public administration system that is not partially based on corruption and is entirely based on the values and laws of the country * Better investigation towards the sources of the corruption and probable causes of that particular action * Publicly informing the residents about the source of corruption and negative influence on the countries economy * Regulation of the official positions of an individual to not be the source of abuse for corruption. * Creation of special laws dedicated to the corruption itself for specific establishments


Others

Other common challenges include: Increased and intensified industrial and agricultural production and emission of toxic chemicals directly into the soil, air, and water, unsustainable use of energy resources; high dependency on natural resources for livelihood, leading to unsustainable exploitation or depletion of those resources; child Marriage, indebtedness (see Debt of developing countries) and under performing civil service (see Civil service reform in developing countries), food insecurity, Literacy, illiteracy and unemployment.The economies of many developing nations are tried to primary products and a majority of their exports go to advanced nations. When advanced nations encounter economic downturns, they can quickly transmitted to their developing country trading partners as seen in global economic downturn of 2008–2009.


Opportunities

* Human Capital * Trade Policy: Countries with more restrictive policies have not grown as fast as countries with open and less distorted trade policies. * Investment: Investment has a positive effect on growth. * Education * Aid for Trade: Included in Sustainable Development Goal 8 under Target 8.a.1 Increase aid for trade is an initiative to help developing countries practice trade and benefit. Aid for trade is to assist developing countries in trade related programmes, priotise trade and trade capacity, improve trade performance and reduce
poverty Poverty is the state of having little material possessions or income In microeconomics, income is the Consumption (economics), consumption and saving opportunity gained by an entity within a specified timeframe, which is generally expresse ...

poverty
. * Global partnership: A provision of Sustainable Development Goal 17 which advocates for international investment and support to achieve innovative technological development, access to market, and fair trade for developing countries.


Country lists


Developing countries according to International Monetary Fund

The following are considered developing economies according to the
International Monetary Fund The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is an international financial institution, headquartered in Washington, D.C. ) , image_skyline = , image_caption = Clockwise from top left: the Washington Monument The ...

International Monetary Fund
's World Economic Outlook Database, . * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Countries not listed by IMF * * * * *


Countries and regions that are graduated developed economies

The following list, including the Four Asian Tigers and new Eurozone European countries, were historically considered developing countries and regions until the 1990s, and are now listed as advanced economy, advanced economies (developed countries and regions) by the IMF. Time in brackets is the time to be listed as advanced economies. * (since 1997) * (since 1997) * (since 1997) * (since 1997) * (since 1997) * (since 2001) * (since 2007) * (since 2008) * (since 2009, since 2006 by
World Bank The World Bank is an international financial institution An international financial institution (IFI) is a financial institution that has been established (or chartered) by more than one country, and hence is subject to international law. Its o ...
) * (since 2009) * (since 2011) * (since 2014) * (since 2015) Three economies lack data before being listed as advanced economies. However, because of the lack of data, it is difficult to judge whether they were advanced economies or developing economies before being listed as advanced economies. * (since 2012) * (since 2016) * (since 2016)


Newly industrialized countries

Ten countries belong to the "newly industrialized country" classification. They are countries whose economies have not yet reached a developed country's status but have, in a macroeconomic sense, outpaced their developing counterparts: * * * * * * * * * *


BRICS countries

Five countries belong to the "emerging markets" groups and are together called the BRICS countries: * (since 2006) * (since 2006) * (since 2006) * (since 2006) * (since 2010)


Society and culture


Media coverage

When looking at Media bias, media coverage of developing countries, a generalized view has developed through Western media. Negative images and coverage of the
poverty Poverty is the state of having little material possessions or income In microeconomics, income is the Consumption (economics), consumption and saving opportunity gained by an entity within a specified timeframe, which is generally expresse ...

poverty
are frequent in the mass media when talking about developing countries. This common coverage has created a dominant stereotype of developing countries as: "the 'Global South, South' is characterized by Socioeconomics, socioeconomic and political backwardness, measured against Western values and standards." Mass media's role often compares the North–South divide in the World, Global South to the North and is thought to be an aid in the divide. Mass media has also played a role in what information the people in developing countries receive. The news often covers developed countries and creates an imbalance of information flow. The people in developing countries do not often receive coverage of the other developing countries but instead gets generous amounts of coverage about developed countries.


See also

*Colonialism *International development *Land reform *List of countries by wealth per adult *Women migrant workers from developing countries


References


External links

* {{Authority control Economic globalization Geographical neologisms Economic country classifications International development, Country Economic geography Economic development, Country Euphemisms Human geography Sustainable development Imperialism studies