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1.5.3 RQ-TQ imbalance and poverty

(This section is an extract from the first chapter of volume II)

The major factor for poverty in many developing nations is population growth pattern. The population of developing nations had almost risen three times during the twentieth century; the significant part of the rise is during the second half of the century. To maintain the standard of living one must build schools, hospitals, roads, and other infrastructures, at the same rate to compensate for rising population. But these nations were already poor and illiterate. This means such compensating infrastructure cannot and had not been built, the result is the drastic reduction in the quality of life: overpopulation, lack of medical facilities, roads, electricity, poverty etc.

To understand the different pattern of population growth we need to understand what has been going on internally in the nations of the world. Major cause of drop in death rates during the 20th century all over the world is due to extraordinary advances in science and technology that gave new medicines. Some of this were the development of antibiotics, immunization, etc., which reduced both adult and infant death rates, all over the world. Important things to note is that these advances mostly happened in industrialized economies. This means industrialized economies were societies that were already advanced enough to invent these medicines. This implies such societies are modern similar to now, with both men and women well educated, with lots of working women. In such conditions we would expect low birth rate. Both industrialized and developing nations received knowledge of medicines that helped reduce death rate. Since the birth rates of developed nations were already low this did not cause much of a problem. But in case of developing nations, the birth rate was still high because of large rural population with highly traditional cultural values that is comfortable with having many children (4 or 5). The reduction in death rate but persisting high birth rate resulted in high population growth, with many significant impacts on the society.

The birth rate in developing nations has been dropping but not fast enough. Almost all developing nations have adopted using technologies invented in the advanced developed world. This includes electronics, automobiles, including the medicinal advances that were responsible for reduction in death rate. What we see is that these nations have absorbed technologies faster, but the social advances need to reduce birth rate has happened slowly. In other words we have an imbalanced development: fast technological advance, but slow social changes, which is responsible for significant problem with poverty and low quality of life.

In today’s world, the same TQ-RQ imbalance pattern is involved in poverty again. Even though, many of the developing nations are adopting modern methods such as free market capitalism, yet, the attitudes of people are still as those of an agricultural society. For example, in India, the majority of businesses are sole proprietorship with small number of employees or only with family members as workers. They lack skill and motivation to grow, compete, innovate or encourage these aspects in community. The relational values followed are that of family owned farming, with ultimate purpose of sustaining a family. This lack of skill and motivation for growth, results in lack of job creation, poor wages for employees, low production, ultimately resulting in continued existence of poverty. Yet, they often own modern equipment’s such as latest mobile phones, computers, internet, homes built with modern architecture, etc. We see that the TQ factor has evolved over time but the RQ factor has not.

One of the major factors relating to RQ-TQ imbalance is how people are trained in education. Most countries in the world, particularly developing countries, give more importance to technological education rather than those related to RQ such as behavioral sciences, management, sociology, economics, team and entrepreneurship skills, etc. The consequence is that new graduates are not able to convert their skill into business skills, failing to create employment and manufacturing. Result is continuing poverty, unemployment, inflation, etc.

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