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The Things The World Fears Most, Ranked

The economy? Iran? Climate change? See which countries are worried–and which ones aren’t.

In the U.S., we fear ISIS the most. But we’re worried about a lot of other things, too, like Iran’s nuclear program, cyberattacks, tensions with Russia, global economics, and climate change. China, on the other hand, isn’t that worried about anything.

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This interactive visualization at The Guardian offers a peek into the world’s psyche, one nation at a time. Built from Pew Research data in a survey of 45,435 people across 40 countries, it reveals the issues nations are “very concerned” about. In essence, it’s a cross-category ranking of our fears. Overall, the environment was the world’s most unified concern (a statistic that may sound surprising, given the globe’s relatively poor track record on environmental policy).

What about individual nations? What you learn pretty quickly is–beyond the sad but obvious fact that countries like Lebanon, which face the greatest geographic threat from ISIS, are most afraid of it (85% of people surveyed were “very concerned”)–not every country is really all that worried about stuff.

See the interactive graphic hereThe Guardian

Poland is most worried about tensions in Russia (44% were “very concerned”). But the climate? China’s borders? No big deal. Take a look at Pakistan. Survey respondents there seem to flat-out have no worries at all. (Only 6% were concerned about the economy! 7% were concerned about Russia!) Of course, the country’s relationship with Iran is currently very good. And its border tensions with India weren’t part of the poll.

So it’s important to keep in mind that while every country has its problems, they aren’t necessarily the world’s problems. And just because the entire world is concerned about one topic *cough* climate change *cough* doesn’t mean the most influential countries in the world are going to do anything about it *cough* China *cough*.

See more here.

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About the author

Mark Wilson is a senior writer at Fast Company who has written about design, technology, and culture for almost 15 years. His work has appeared at Gizmodo, Kotaku, PopMech, PopSci, Esquire, American Photo and Lucky Peach

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