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 countries that border the African Great Lakes
The top 5 countries most similar to Uganda are all located in East Africa around the African Great Lakes. All natively speak Bantu languages as well. In addition, 4 of the top 5 have English as one of their official languages. They also all have a majority Christian population.
Top 10 Places Most Similar to Uganda
- Tanzania is another country that has English and Swahili as their official languages. The diets of their people are nearly identical, since they both eat a lot of corn and cassava. Neither country eats a lot of meat. They also drink a relatively large amount of homemade liqueur. Furthermore, their laws are also nearly identical. Both countries are very conservative and do not allow prostitution or homosexual relations. However, Tanzania has a higher percentage of Muslims.
- Rwanda is located to the south of Uganda. Like Uganda, it has nearly an equal mix of Protestants and Catholics. Uganda and Rwanda have a high percentage of their land used for agriculture and they both grow beans, corn, sorghum, and sweet potato. Both countries have received significant military aid and equipment from Russia. However, Rwanda does not use the Type G electrical outlet or drive on the left side of the road, since it was once a Belgian colony, not a British one. Still, it has adopted English as one of its official languages.
- Kenya, like Uganda and Tanzania, borders Lake Victoria and has both English and Swahili as its official language. In addition, both countries call their currency shillings. They also use Type G electrical outlets, drive on the left, and use one meter wide railroad gauge. However, Kenya is much more successful in the Olympics than Uganda, since its long distance runners are some of the best in the world. In addition, their diet is different, since they eat more millet, potatoes, and wheat. Furthermore, Kenya’s climate is drier and it has more desert.
- Burundi also borders Tanzania, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Both Burundi and Uganda have unstable governments and often have rigged elections. Both countries have criminalized homosexual relationships and also prostitution. Like Uganda, Burundi gets most of its electricity from hydropower. One big difference is that Burundi’s official language is French, since it was once a Belgian colony.
- Zambia is yet another former British colony on this list, so the countries have similar infrastructure and form of government. However, Zambia has fewer Muslims than Uganda. It is also less densely populated and has a much higher percentage of forested area.
- Malawi, 7. Ghana, 8. Togo, 9. Cameroon, 10. Zimbabwe
Top 10 Places Least Similar to Uganda
- Japan is by far the least similar country to Uganda. Not only is its geography significantly different, but also its demographics, culture, and technology. There isn’t much in common between the two, except that they both drive on the left.
- Taiwan is another Asian country located in the Pacific Ocean on this list. Like Japan, its demographics and culture are quite different from Uganda. However, Taiwan’s subtropical climate is more similar to Uganda than Japan.
- South Korea is also located in East Asia. It is another highly developed, densely populated country with a lot of coastline. However, South Korea does have a significant Christian population, although they have little else in common.
- Germany is the least similar country in Europe. According to the Lewis Model, Ugandans are very outgoing and emotional, while Germans in contrast, tend to be cool factual planners. Germany’s laws are quite different as well, since it legalized abortion and prostitution, but does not allow surrogacy or polygamy. However, one similarity is that both countries have a mix of Catholics and Protestants, although Germany is less religious.
- Netherlands is another extremely liberal Germanic country on this list. It also is much more densely populated and developed than Uganda. While Uganda is landlocked, much of the Netherlands is low-lying and located next to the coast.
- Finland, 7. Denmark, 8. Iceland, 9. Norway, 10. Belgium
Do you agree with the list?
Please leave any thoughts in the comments section.