Basic development of the level that has been mostly achieved in Europe today will be norm throughout the world by about 2080.
Key aspects of development are non-slum urbanization at 70% or higher.
Energy and other infrastructure to European levels or better.
Generally developed world level education systems.
Public health at developed world levels.
If these conditions are in place then a country (barring recent or ongoing war or massive political screw up should achieve at least 20% of the per capita income of the average developed nation). Some small countries can outperform the average developed nation by 150-200%.
So it is 5X for the bottom to the middle.
And 10X bottom to the top in national per capita income.
Currently it is 20X for the bottom to the middle and 100X for national per capita income.
The world 25-40 percentile which includes China should catchup to the 30% of leading developed country per capita level by 2030
The world 25-40 percentile which includes China should catchup to the 50% of leading developed country per capita level by 2050
The world 40-70 percentile which includes India should catchup to the 20-30% of leading developed country per capita level by 2050
The world 70-85 percentile should catchup to the 20-30% of leading developed country per capita level by 2080
Urbanization levels by region is a proxy for the economic catchup by region. The slum areas of cities should not count towards proper urbanization and development.
Venezuela and Argentina have shown that it is possible for a country to badly regress in development and per capita income.
What could change convergence of development would be a renewed technological and systemic surge in growth from the leading countries that was somehow not easily copied by the developing nations.
There will be productivity and development gains possible from self driving cars and skyscrapers which could be fully leveraged by redesigning cities. Populations and nations that are willing to restructure their cities would have an advantage in boosting per capita GDP.
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
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