Have you ever wondered how similar or different two countries are? The Country Similarity Index attempts to quantify how similar countries are to each other relative to other countries. The index is a statistically-based way to measure this. The index weights equally five major aspects of countries: their demographics, culture, politics, technology, and geography. In addition each aspect was roughly balanced evenly between quantity/percentage and quality/type. See this post for a full explanation: https://objectivelists.home.blog/2020/05/30/country-similarity-index/
Similar to other Southern Slavic countries
The top 5 countries most similar to Bosnia & Herzegovina were occupied (at least in part) by the Ottomans at some point. In addition, the top 4 were all part of Yugoslavia also. Slovenia is further down on the list because it is more prosperous and has more of a Western European influence.
Top 10 Places Most Similar to Bosnia & Herzegovina
- Montenegro is to the south of Bosnia. Both countries speak Serbo-Croatian and have a mix of Christians and Muslims. However, Montenegro’s agriculture is quite different, since a large portion of their land is devoted to growing figs and grapes. In addition, their people drink much more wine than Bosnians.
- Serbia is yet another country that speaks Serbo-Croatian. Like Bosnia, it uses both Cyrillic and Latin writing systems. A large part of Bosnia is made up of Republika Srpska, a large autonomous region that has most of the country’s ethnic Serbs. However, Serbia has a far lower percentage of Muslims.
- North Macedonia has the next highest percentage of Muslims of former Yugoslavian countries, with around 30%. Although the Macedonian language is similar to Serbo-Croatian, it is not mutually intelligible. Both countries generate power mostly with coal. Due to their mountainous terrain, they both also have many dams, which are used as water reservoirs and also create electricity.
- Croatia, unlike other countries in Yugoslavia, was never completely taken over by the Ottomans, so it has less of a Middle Eastern influence. It also has less of an Eastern European influence, since it is mostly Catholic and does not use Cyrillic. Still, there is a large percentage of ethnic Croats living in Bosnia.
- Bulgaria is the only country that was not part of Yugoslavia in the top 5. It is another Slavic country that was occupied by the Ottoman Empire. One big difference is in sports. Bosnia has never won an Olympic medal, while Bulgaria has many. Bulgaria also isn’t as interested in handball or basketball as much as Bosnia. Bulgarians drink much more alcohol per person as well.
- Albania, 7. Slovakia, 8. Slovenia 9. Romania, 10. Poland
Top 10 Places Least Similar to Bosnia & Herzegovina
- Singapore is a small tropical island city-state, near Malaysia, so its geography is vastly different from Bosnia, which is nearly landlocked and quite mountainous. While Singapore is filled with skyscrapers, Bosnia does not have any. However, there is a significant percentage of Muslims and Christians living in Singapore.
- Solomon Islands is located in Melanesia. The tropical rainforest nation shares few things in common with Bosnia, since its demographics and culture are vastly different. In addition, their technology is quite different since they drive on the left, use Type I electrical outlets, and have no railways in use, unlike Bosnia & Herzegovina.
- Papua New Guinea is another country similar to the Solomon Islands. It is one of the hottest and wettest countries in the world, in contrast to Bosnia. However, both countries are quite mountainous and do not have skyscrapers.
- Yemen, although it is another country with a majority Muslim population, is far different from Bosnia. It has much more conservative laws. Yemen also has a warm desert climate in contrast to the temperate alpine climate of Bosnia. Furthermore, while Bosnians are some of the tallest people on average, Yemenis are some of the shortest.
- South Sudan is located in East Africa. Like Yemen it is quite poor and its infrastructure is not well-developed. While a majority of its population is Christian, unlike Bosnia they are mostly Protestants. Many South Sudanese also practice traditional African religions as well.
- Sudan, 7. Somalia, 8. Eritrea, 9. Uganda, 10. Bangladesh
Do you agree with the list?
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