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 objective 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 French-speaking countries in West Africa
The top 5 countries most similar to Mali all were colonized by France and were part of French West Africa. The countries also all use the West African CFA franc and their people can travel between these countries without visas. They are all part of the Economic Community of West African States.
Top 10 Places Most Similar to Burkina Faso
- Mali is another landlocked country bordering Burkina Faso. Both countries have a significant percentage of Fula people. Their governments are also similar. Although they are not especially democratic, they are also not dictatorships. They both have unicameral legislatures with many different parties represented. Mali and Burkina Faso also allow polygamy and unorganized prostitution. However, while both have a majority Muslim populations, Mali has a far lower percentage of Christians.
- Benin also has a mix of people practicing Christianity, Islam, and Voodoo, although it has more Christians than Muslims. In addition, their governments are extremely similar. Both have relatively liberal abortion and alcohol laws. However, they do not share many similar ethnic groups. In addition, their diets are not similar either. People in Benin eat far more chicken and yams, in contrast to Burkina Faso, where beef, corn, and millet is more popular.
- Senegal‘s technology is especially similar to Burkina Faso. Both countries do not have well developed infrastructure and rely on oil to create electricity. In addition, their climates are extremely similar, since both countries are on the border between the Sahel and Sub-Saharan Africa. Both countries are secular democracies after Burkina Faso’s dictator was overthrown in 2014. However, while both have a majority Muslim populations, Senegal has a far lower percentage of Christians.
- Ivory Coast is a located to the southwest of Burkina Faso. Both countries have a significant portion of its population that natively speak Dyula. They also have a diverse mix of Muslims, Catholics, and Protestants. In addition, both drink a lot of liqueur. However, their Ivory Coast has a lower percentage of agricultural land and the crops they grow are completely different. Ivory Coast grows a lot of cocoa and cashews, while Burkina Faso grows more sorghum, millet, and cow peas. Another difference is that Ivory Coast uses mostly natural gas, not oil to create electricity.
- Togo is directly to the south of Burkina Faso, between Benin and Ghana. A high percentage of land in both countries is used for agriculture. They both grow corn, cotton, and sorghum. Both countries were dictatorships for several decades, although Burkina Faso’s dictator was overthrown in 2014, and the country has become more democratic. One difference is religion, since far more people in Togo practice Voodoo, although it also has both Christians and Muslims as well. They also do not share many similar ethnic groups.
- Guinea, 7. Niger, 8. Guinea-Bissau, 9. Central African Republic, 10. Chad
Top 10 Places Least Similar to Burkina Faso
- Japan is by far the least similar country to Burkina Faso. Its geography is especially different, since it is a mountainous archipelago with a temperate climate and a lot of rainfall. Its demographics, culture, and technology are also quite different. There isn’t much in common between the two, except that the average height and weight of their people are similar.
- Canada is also one of the coldest countries in the world, while Burkina Faso is one of the hottest. A far lower percentage of its land is used for agriculture and they do not grow similar crops. Canada’s parliamentary democracy with a constitutional monarch as head of state, is significantly different than Burkina Faso’s semi-presidential form of government. The biggest similarity is that both countries do have French as one of their official languages.
- United States is another North American country on this list. It is especially different from Burkina Faso in technology. It has more guns per capita and its military is much more sophisticated. In addition, it has far more cars per capita. Still, a significant percentage of Americans have African ancestry.
- New Zealand is another mountainous, temperate archipelago in the Pacific Ocean, like Japan. Its technology is also significantly different from Burkina Faso, since it drives on the left and uses Type I electrical outlets, although the voltage is the same. Both countries also do not use the same standard railroad gauge either.
- Norway has a lot of coastline and is far more mountainous than Burkina Faso. In addition, its climate is also much colder. It is also far more wealthy and its infrastructure is more developed. However, unlike the top 4 countries, its time zone is only one hour ahead of Burkina Faso.
- Great Britain, 7. Switzerland, 8. South Korea, 9. Singapore, 10. Taiwan
Full Ranking of Countries and Territories Most Similar to Burkina Faso
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