Map of Kazakhstan IQ

The PISA 2018 report has detailed regional data for Canada, Spain, and Kazakhstan (as well as more limited regional data for eight other countries), which you can find on pp.255-260 of PISA 2018 Results (Volume I) [excel].

We have already had maps of regional PISA-based IQ in Italy, Spain, Russia, and Germany, but this is the first time AFAIK that we have detailed regional results from Kazakhstan.

And here’s the data on which this is based:

Region Read Math Science IQ %Kaz %Rus TFR
Akmola 395 411 401 85.4 50.4% 33.6% 2.19
Aktobe 381 420 389 84.5 81.7% 12.1% 2.70
Almaty (city) 424 448 431 90.2 58.2% 27.5% 2.65
Almaty region 360 399 380 82.0 70.7% 14.3% 2.65
Astana (city) 428 450 428 90.3 75.5% 15.3% 2.44
Atyrau 344 382 361 79.3 92.1% 5.7% 3.29
East-Kazakhstan 405 437 413 87.8 59.4% 37.1% 2.07
Karagandy 422 446 428 89.8 50.4% 36.5% 2.04
Kostanay 417 448 426 89.5 39.7% 41.6% 1.70
Kyzyl-Orda 366 419 374 83.0 96.0% 2.0% 3.42
Mangistau 361 391 365 80.8 90.3% 6.1% 3.80
North-Kazakhstan 413 433 419 88.2 34.6% 49.8% 1.72
Pavlodar 391 438 413 87.1 50.9% 36.5% 1.98
South-Kazakhstan 368 401 373 82.1 72.9% 4.6% 3.71
West-Kazakhstan 378 418 391 84.3 75.2% 20.2% 2.29
Zhambyl 369 456 397 86.1 72.6% 10.3% 3.20
Kazakhstan 387 423 397 85.4 66.5% 20.6% 2.65

Sources: Population data as of 2016; TFR data as if ~2009 (1, 2).

One of the nice things about HBD is that there are few surprises that go against intuition, and the regional PISA results from Kazakhstan are no exception to this.

(1) One can immediately make out the correlation between this, and areas of concentrated European (primarily Russian) settlement:

(2) The PISA-adjusted IQ of Kazakhstan is around 85.4 (relative to OECD), which is almost a standard deviation lower than Russia’s and well in line with Grigoriev & Lynn’s estimate of 87.7 (relative to UK).

(3) Kazakhstan’s two capitals – the old Soviet era capital of Almaty with 2 million residents (90.2), and the new capital of Astana (now Nur-Sultan), with 1 million residents (90.3) – are both significantly above the Kazakhstani mean. Furthermore, the gap, at around 5 IQ points, is similar to that between Moscow/SPB and the Russian average.

(4) All the correlations – between IQ and shares of ethnic Russians and Kazakhs; between fertility rates and IQ; and between fertility rates and shares of ethnic Russians and Kazakhs – are exactly as one would expect.

Correlations Kazakhstan Kazakhstan (no capitals)
IQ-%Kazakhs -0.71 -0.84
IQ-%Russians 0.72 0.85
TFR-IQ -0.73 -0.82
TFR-%Kazakhs 0.83 0.86
TFR-%Russians -0.92 -0.94

Incidentally, if one was to extrapolate the regression curve to 100% Kazakh or 100% Russian (no capitals), you’d get a Kazakh IQ of 78 and a Russian IQ of 103, respectively. Despite this method’s lack of rigor, this is still remarkably close to Grigoriev and Lynn’s estimates of a mean British IQ of 82.2 for Kazakhs and of 103.2 for Russians in Kazakhstan.

(5) Although these ethnic Kazakhs results might seem improbably low, do note that Kyrgyzstan came absolute bottom in PISA 2009, below even the two Indian states that participated in a 2010 follow-up study. The Kazakhs and Kyrgyz are very closely related peoples.

Ethnic Kazakhs are at least a full standard deviation below the cognitive profiles that are generally needed to build First World societies and economies with complex, value-adding O-Ring sectors. That said, likely thanks to natural resources, good technocratic leadership, and the European smart fraction, they have managed to prosper in relative terms, becoming much richer than any other Central Asian country (there are about a million Gastarbeiters in Kazakhstan itself from the rest of the region) and with GDP per capita coming close to Russian levels.

However, as I have also written in the past, ethnic Russian fertility is much lower than Kazakh, and many Russians continue to emigrate back to Russia (in polls, 2/3 of them say they want to emigrate). Thus, while ethnic Russians constitute half of 85+ year olds in Kazakhstan, thir share falls to just a bit more than 10% amongst children and teenagers. On the one hand, the ebbing of Russian demographics is good for Kazakh nation-building, since the prospect of North Kazakhstan reverting to South Siberia grows dimmer with every passing year. On the other hand, it also constitutes a decline in Kazakhstan’s smart fraction, and can be expected to have increasingly bad economic knock-on effects. Nor is adequate political leadership guaranteed. While PISA 2018 refers to “Astana”, the city was renamed to “Nur-Sultan” in March 2019. I had previously been under the impression that the Kazakhs were a bit above the personality cults typical of Central Asia, but this may have to be reconsidered.

Consequently, I don’t expect Kazakhstan to climb out of the middle-income trap in the foreseeable future.


  1. Please keep off topic posts to the current Open Thread.

    If you are new to my work, start here.

  2. Brexit Brexit says

    TL;DL, Russians are master race?

  3. Thulean Friend says

    The PISA 2018 report has detailed regional data for Canada, Spain, and Kazakhstan (as well as more limited regional data for eight other countries)

    There’s plenty of more regional data here:

    You may need Stata or a similar program to make sense of it. You can select different cities even. For example, individual data for Prague, Budapest Copenhagen and many more cities exists.

  4. Felix Keverich says

    No, but Kazakhs are basically subhuman, despite being lighter-skinned Mongoloids.

    I wonder what happens to Kazakhstan after Nazarbaev dies? The country might become dysfunctional cesspit, like the rest of Central Asia. It would be a perfect opportunity to grab ethnically Russian regions.

  5. So, what explains it? Kazakhstan is reasonably cold, so it doesn’t seem like cold selection explains the gap. What are the other possibilities? And did I miss anything?

    -Farming is more intellectually demanding than herding.
    -Farming allows for a higher pop count, which stimulates Malthusian competition
    -Easier to steal someone’s herd than grain
    -Steppe is conducive to warfare, creating a random mortality just like tropical diseases do in Africa.

    Also, herding is by nature more communal or clan-based. Territory isn’t controlled by individuals, so you don’t really have inter-individual competition in the same way as farming.(Would this mean Kazakhs are more group-selected and less prone to poz?)

  6. Wonder what the average IQ would be if, instead of mass executions or long imprisonments, Stalin had sent his enemies to Kazakhstan.

  7. Thulean Friend says

    likely thanks to natural resources, good technocratic leadership, and the European smart fraction, they have managed to prosper in relative terms

    All of the sudden all the talk about natural resources being a dampener for Russia (“resource curse”…”dutch disease”) fly out the window when discussing Kazakhstan.

    Interesting how this works. Some people’s theories change radically depending on the country you talk about.

  8. Please cite where I claimed anything to that effect.

    You seem to have a rather dishonest approach of conflating what I say with what (some of) my commenters say.

  9. The people who use that argument about Russia are usually on the other side:

  10. Brexit Brexit says

    Ethnic Kazakh IQ appears to be about on par with South Slav/Balkan IQ.

  11. I wonder how common cousin marriage is in Kazakhstan, but I can’t seem to find any data on it.

  12. @Anatoly Karlin

    If you are looking for 2018 TFR data, you can check the newest Demographic Yearbook of KZ 2014-2018 here. The TFR by region is on the 133rd page of the document (page 132).

    Turkestan, the newly created oblast of the rural parts of the former South Kazakhstan, tops the list with 4.07 children per woman. Unfortunately, it is also the second dumbest region of the country (may now even be the dumbest, as Shymkent City is now its own region.

  13. Amerimutt Golems says

    All of the sudden all the talk about natural resources being a dampener for Russia (“resource curse”…”dutch disease”) fly out the window when discussing Kazakhstan.

    Kazakhstan is even more exposed to commodities which comprise nearly 90% of exports.

    Savings thereof are also not impressive compared to petro-dollar peers.

  14. Why was the capital moved? Did a quick search and got conflicting answers.

  15. Anatoly, what are you to make of the fact that, in 1989, Kazakhs in the USSR were apparently more educated than Ukrainians and Belarusians were? :

    Do you think that this was merely the result of affirmative action, or do you think that there was something else to this?

    BTW, it’s interesting that Kazakhs are so dull in spite of them looking like East Asians. Of course, it would be nice to see future PISA testing data for Kazakhstan to see if there will actually be any improvements. I mean, I can’t imagine Kazakhs being genetically duller than US blacks are. Indeed, it would truly be astounding if this was actually true.

    Also, from a Russian perspective, it appears to have been a good thing to withdraw from Central Asia, no? After all, this essentially resulted in tens of millions of low-IQ people no longer being Russia’s responsibility.

  16. Kazakhstan has very cold winters and Kazakhs are about 60% Eastern Eurasian by blood, so one would think they had IQ potential. However, it’s hard to see how a gap of 21 IQ points between ethinc groups in the same country could be environmental. Maybe herding doesn’t develop IQ, on the other hand Mongols seem to have pretty high IQs.

  17. Korenchkin says

    No, it is not
    South Slav IQ averages around 95, Kazakh is in the 80s
    Kazakhs are closer to Albanians then South Slavs

  18. Korenchkin says

    Better question would be why the fuck change the name of the entire city to the former Presidents name?
    It was a meme in the past that every school, hospital and street in Kazakhstan is named after Nazarbayev, but this…
    I can’t believe this actually happened

  19. Blinky Bill says

    It would be a perfect opportunity to grab ethnically Russian regions.

    Felix Keverich

  20. reiner Tor says

    Grabbing territories from friendly and well-functioning neighbors would probably be a bad idea, but if Kazakhstan becomes a failed state or hostile or just highly dysfunctional, then it would certainly make a lot of sense.

    Meanwhile, I’m not sure what’s happening with Belarus and the potato president. But a similar dynamic might be playing out there.

    1. In the current economy, Russia is so much wealthier than Belarus and Ukraine, because of extraction of natural resources including oil and gas.

    Most “really big money” in the economy derives eventually from natural resource extraction, and also even up to half of government’s money (depending on the year).

    Belarus and Ukraine only have limited natural resources, as a comparison.

    1. Russia/Belarus and even Ukraine all have colossal human capital in potential. All the world knows this – because the Russian world has dominated human achievement in many areas during the 20th century.

    2. Why is there a decline in achievement today, compared to the 20th century? At local level, because political instability and then breakdown of incentive system, that was conducive of human achievement in the Soviet times. At a global level, probably because of increased distractions from personal technology.

  21. I’ve heard that it was done in order to reduce the risk of Russian separatism by giving the Kazakh government and ethnic Kazakhs in general a larger presence in northern Kazakhstan.

  22. reiner Tor says

    Dutch Disease means a large resource extraction industry and very little else. But it doesn’t mean you will get poorer, actually, you will likely still end up richer.

  23. Brexit Brexit says

    Only if you include Slovenia and Croatia, who seem to be outliers in the Balkan region, and Slovenia is arguably not even Balkan at all. On a country by country basis, Serbia – 90, Bulgaria – 93, Montenegro – 86, Romania – 91, Macedonia – 91. All around about ethnic Kazakh level.

    People just seem to pick and choose which IQ data suits their own agenda and prejudices and ignore the data that doesn’t or even outright claim it to be false. A lot of posters on this site seem only too happy to point out IQ data that “proves” non-whites are unintelligent but get very defensive and even angry when someone points out data that “proves” that same thing about certain white groups.

  24. Sure, but I am still waiting for TF to point out where I (i.e., not some commenters) made that argument.

    To the contrary, I have always said that natural resource rents tend to elevate GDP per capita above what it “should be” (and Communist legacy, depress it).

    And in fact if one were to search my old archives you would find me arguing against the claim that Russia had Dutch disease.

  25. reiner Tor says

    you would find me arguing *against* the claim that Russia had Dutch disease.

    But how is the Dutch disease avoidable? The export of natural resources will strengthen the currency and make imports cheaper, which in turn will result in a reduced manufacturing sector. I don’t think it’s enough to make the country poorer than without the natural resources. I don’t even think that this mechanism is enough to fully suppress the positive effects of them, it just reduces the income gains and makes the country more dependent on the natural resources in question. In other words, Russia would be poorer without the oil, just not as much poorer as you’d think based on the size of the oil sector and its multiplicative effects. And its other industries like manufacturing or high technology would be stronger.

  26. RadicalCenter says

    Wouldn’t mind seeing that. But if Russia doesn’t hurry, there won’t be many Russians left in even northern Kazakhstan.

  27. Vishnugupta says

    Well there is always the Norwegian Sovereign Wealth Fund model to invest surpluses accruing from resource windfalls abroad and only use a part of the return on this investment.

    Though this approach is often held up as the gold standard it is important to note that on a per capita basis Russia is nowhere near as resource rich as Norway

    I think the broader lesson is to direct the resource windfall in productivity enhancing investments like Infrastructure,STEM related investments/subsidies both in research as well as launch aid/incentives for projects like the MC 21 aircraft program with obvious positive multiplier effects on the entire economy instead of spending this windfall on financing consumption of the population via higher government salaries and various make work projects.

    Russia has as far as I can tell struck a reasonably good balance in the utilization of its resource windfall unlike say Venezuela.

  28. RadicalCenter says

    Does Russia have a sovereign wealth fund into which they deposit and invest some of their oil/gas/mineral export revenues? I hope so.

  29. RadicalCenter says

    One big reason for the decline in Russian achievement in some fields, if there has been a decline: the population has gotten much older on average, and I think it’s still getting older.

  30. Vishnugupta says

    Yes it does but it is relatively much smaller as a percentage of Russian GDP than the Norwegian Sovereign Wealth Fund and IIRC these funds are more used as a reserve to plug Russian budget deficits in years of low oil prices than as part of a national investment strategy.

  31. On a country by country basis, Serbia – 90, Bulgaria – 93, Montenegro – 86, Romania – 91, Macedonia – 91. All around about ethnic Kazakh level.

    All but one of these is in the low 90s, though. (In contrast, Kazakhs appear to be in the low 80s right now–though this isn’t necessarily their full potential.) Or are you suggesting that the average IQ ceiling for Kazakhs would also be in the low 90s?

  32. RadicalCenter says

    AK’s stats seem to show that Astana and Almaty have an average IQ in the South Slavic and Balkan range, but that most of the rest of the country is slightly lower to substantially lower.

    If we are going to exclude higher in scores in Croatia and Slovenia as local outliers, then let’s exclude the low Montenegro score as an outlier as well.

    Montenegro is an utterly insignificant part of that region’s mix, anyway, because their population is only 600,000 and declining, compared to Romania 19 million, Bulgaria 7 million, Croatia 4 million and Slovenia 2 million.

    So the Kazakh average IQ shown is about on par with Romania and Bulgaria in Astana and Almaty, otherwise noticeably lower than any of the countries listed with any meaningful population.

    Also, do we know the number of people who took the IQ test in each country, and whether there is some factor that skews the demographics of the samples?

  33. RadicalCenter says

    Thanks, Vishnugupta.

    Glad that Russia has such a fund, and I’m sure it would be larger if we weren’t belligerently sanctioning them for years on end.

    I looked it up and it seems russia has a Reserve Fund invested in less risky, lower-yielding instruments, and a typically smaller Wealth Fund invested at least partly in higher-risk, higher-return endeavors.

    The USA should have such funds. I know, cue the Derbyshire maniacal-laugh track.

  34. Vishnugupta says

    The reserve fund was wound up a couple of years back.

    Only the Russian national wealth fund remains.

  35. What is the methodology to get “regional PISA-based IQ”? How PISA three numbers are converted to one number? What were the parameters of scaling used for 2018 PISA? Are these parameters global or local, i.e., would you apply them to Germany as well?

    “Incidentally, if one was to extrapolate the regression curve to 100% Kazakh or 100% Russian (no capitals), you’d get a Kazakh IQ of 78 and a Russian IQ of 103” – More skeptical readers would like too see the details.

  36. PISA18 Math histogram for KAZ,ROU and RUS. For KAZ and ROU, %Pop for IQlike>127.6 are virtually nil. (UK avg IQlike=100).

    Testing. Proportional font might screw up the chart.

    #:KAZ,@:ROU,%:RUS ; MathBin,IQlike,%Pop
    |####################### 357.77,76.2,22.3%
    |@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@ 357.77,76.2,22.6%
    |%%%%%%% 357.77,76.2,6.8%
    |########################### 420.07,86.5,26.8%
    |@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@ 420.07,86.5,23.9%
    |%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% 420.07,86.5,14.9%
    |########################### 482.38,96.8,26.6%
    |@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@ 482.38,96.8,24.5%
    |%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% 482.38,96.8,25.0%
    |################# 544.68,107.0,16.0% about IQ100
    |@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@ 544.68,107.0,17.3%
    |%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% 544.68,107.0,27.5%
    |####### 606.99,117.3,6.3%
    |@@@@@@@@@ 606.99,117.3,8.5%
    |%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% 606.99,117.3,17.8%
    |## 669.30,127.6,1.6%
    |@@@ 669.30,127.6,2.7%
    |%%%%%%% 669.30,127.6,6.6%
    |# 669.3+,127.6+,0.3%
    |@ 669.3+,127.6+,0.4%
    |%% 669.3+,127.6+,1.5%

    Yap. They are in diff scale. Back to drawing board.

  37. He did (some). Kazakhstan used to have a pretty large German community that was deported there (there were about a million ethnic Germans in Kazakhstan in 1989). They are mostly in Germany now.

  38. Depend on where you anchored the IQ100 to which PISA score. I used UK avg Math 502 as IQ100, and StdDev for the OECDavg is 91. Then convert PISA score to IQlike with mean 100 StdDev 15.

  39. ‘So, what explains it? ‘

    What explains it is that the scores are not IQ scores.

    They’re academic achievement scores, expressed as the equivalent IQ scores.

    You and I might be precisely equal in intelligence. If I’ve taken a French class and you have not, odds are I’ll do better than you on a French test.

    People are going nuts with these correlations. You want to compare IQ’s?

    Fine: get IQ test results. All this only correlates to IQ to the extent that the educational systems are uniform in quality — and of course they are not at all uniform in quality.

  40. …how is the Dutch disease avoidable? The export of natural resources will strengthen the currency and make imports cheaper, which in turn will result in a reduced manufacturing sector.

    It follows that the best way to avoid Dutch disease is to somehow reduce imports and keep currency artificially undervalued. But how to do it and still conform to the general agreed to trading rules? Well, how about sanctions…one creates a crisis and after much yelling sanctions are put in place to reduce the value of currency (the general effect of Western sanctions) and then in response a selective set of sanctions is used (this time by Russia) to reduce imports.

    Voila, we found a way to avoid the Dutch disease since the natural resources exports are in general unstoppable. And to avoid impoverishment, switch from now overvalued fiat currencies to gold whenever possible. Consumption is reduced temporarily, but that’s mostly fluff of no long-term importance. To stay on topic, this strategy does require a high IQ population to adapt the economy, thus it wouldn’t work in Venezuela.

    Ipso facto, the Russo-phobic neo-cons are de facto working for the long term benefit of Russia. One almost suspects it is intentional. (Is that why Kremlin always sarcastically talks about its ‘partners’?)

  41. china-russia-all-the-way says

    One of the nice things about HBD is that there are few surprises that go against intuition

    What are the surprises? I can only think of a few. Igbos of Nigeria and Kikuyus of Kenya have higher IQs than the African average.

  42. Korenchkin says

    Only if you include Slovenia and Croatia, who seem to be outliers in the Balkan region

    Well sorry, the last century was nothing but propaganda telling me Slovenians and Croats are my South Slavic “brothers”, but now they seem to not be since they don’t fit your claim
    And you are still wrong, only Montenegro which is a barely populated statelet (and like Serbia has an Albanian minority) matches up with Kazakh 80s IQ, the rest have a 5 to 8 point difference

    IQ data that “proves” non-whites are unintelligent but get very defensive and even angry when someone points out data that “proves” that same thing about certain white groups

    Like Svevlad said in the previous thread, our bell curve is probably inverse at this point due to an incredibly dysgenic 20th Century
    I don’t deny that South Slavs are stupid, I can see that for myself every day, I deny that they are as stupid as southern Central Asians
    I don’t recall any Kyrgyz Pupin, Tesla or Milankovic

    But I’m welcome to be proven wrong

  43. Korenchkin says


    Not surprising, Igbos being more clever then the other Africans is a noted stereotype
    They’re probably the Nigerian Prince offering you free money

  44. Korenchkin says

    If Kazakhstan becomes a failed state then you might aswell grab the entire thing and give Kazakhs their own southern Republic within the RF
    It wouldn’t change the ethnic make up of Russia that much % wise, especially if Belarus and Ukraine are once again part of it

  45. Blinky Bill says

    Persians surprising to some and Tamil Brahmins perhaps another ?

  46. Herbert West says

    It’s a good question. They are Muslim after all, if they are marrying first cousins like the Arabs do then there is a good chance for inbreeding depression.

  47. TheTotallyAnonymous says

    If Kazakhstan becomes a failed state then you might aswell grab the entire thing and give Kazakhs their own southern Republic within the RF

    Why though?

    There’s little value in South Kazakhstan besides maybe some natural resources that could be taken without annexing the whole thing. Russia doesn’t need another Muslim high birth rate hostile ethnic minority (Kazakhs) in its state. It already has more than enough of that with the Caucus, which is vital to hold on to due to its geo-strategic position.

    There’s no value for Russia and Russians in taking anything beyond “North Kazakhstan” or South Siberia, and would probably prove to be even more harmful than no annexation at all.

  48. Have you seen Borat?

  49. cold selection theory is absolute rubbish.

  50. Felix Keverich says

    Batka continues to waste Russia’s money and time. He’ll keep his feudal fiefdom, while earning billions in Russian subsidies, until the West overthrows him eventually.

  51. Russia pays about $115 million annually to lease Baikonur, and the Kazakhs think it is not enough.

    Of course, Russia is building a new cosmodrome at Vostochny about 5 degrees further north in latitude, so that might be more desirable than annexing Kazakhstan.

  52. Well if you interpret “Dutch disease” that broadly, then to some extent it would be endemic to all significant natural resource exporters.

    However, in its more limited definition, economists didn’t agree that Russia could be described as having Dutch disease:

    Note that these studies are from 2007, at the very height of the world oil boom, when a case could be made that the ruble really was overvalued.

  53. Thanks.



    1 IQ unit = 6.067 PISA units

  54. I think I mentioned it a few times, but OECD mean is 500, S.D. is 100, convert to IQ scale with mean of 100 and S.D. of 15. Average of the numbers for Reading, Math, and Science.

  55. Thanks. 1 IQ = 6.67 PISA

  56. Jurij Fedorov says

    Usually, when I see numbers calculated from other numbers I get a math formula for it. Here I just see the IQ numbers and it’s not clear if they are from an IQ map, from the PISA scores or calculated based on races directly.

    I know this is not an academic article. But I was searching for this stuff anyhow.

  57. Jurij Fedorov says

    It should be very easy to make a world map with regions like in this article. Tableau does it automatically. But first one would need to calculate IQ from PISA. And therefore an official method needs to exist for this otherwise it’s pointless. I just searched Google and no one really has any clear and simple method to do this. I guess PISA scores alone on a world map with regions will be fine. But it’s a bit boring.

  58. Any kind of *stan is cognitive doom, and other exciting news…

  59. Korenchkin says

    Is it that shocking that Lukashenko is hesitant to hand over his state to Moscow after witnessing the Weimar style anarchy and pillaging of the Russian 90s
    If Belarus is a fiefdom then what was Russia when the seven bankers were calling the shots

  60. Then there is also the empirical approach to run a regression of IQ values from
    IQdb dataset from Becker,

    IQdb = +37.04 +0.122*PISAmath; #n=77; Rsq=0.8488; p=0 *** (VVSig)

    However there could be petty arguments about which countries should be in the calibration sample and are they too loaded with data from the developed countries. So the alternative is to used the traditional approach that defines the average IQ of England as 100. I normally do not care much about the absolute IQ scores (which is actually relative to some reference) and only interested in the relative rankings or scores between groups as long as the comparisons are consistent.

    IQ values are good only because more people have the feel of it rather than the
    PISA scores. However the IQ values are aggregated from many different sources with unclear/hidden sample selection and exclusion rules. Whereas the PISA scores are from a single supervised source with very large sample size and transparent selection and exclusion rules with known ages of the participants and taking the tests about the same time using equivalent sets of test materials. If only there are more country PISA data then I would prefer using the PISA scores directly and avoid the social stigma about IQ values and the petty arguments on whether it is a measure of “intelligence”.

  61. reiner Tor says

    Is it that shocking that Lukashenko is hesitant to hand over his state to Moscow

    It would be a bit of a surprise if he weren’t reluctant. Even CEOs are unhappy with takeovers targeting their companies, however beneficial that might be for their shareholders.

  62. Ha. Found a free graphic hosting site. Which one should work? Testing. PISA Math Histogram.

  63. RadicalCenter says

    Belarus, eastern/southeastern Ukraine (with additional coastline), and the northern sliver of Kazakhstan would seem fine additions to the RF, from a russian cultural and demographic perspective.

  64. RadicalCenter says

    It’s not the 90s in Russia. Lukashenko probably just doesn’t want to give up his own position of power.

  65. Thulean Friend says

    Russia/Belarus and even Ukraine all have colossal human capital in potential. All the world knows this – because the Russian world has dominated human achievement in many areas during the 20th century.

  66. Blinky Bill says

    One of my favourite Russian songs performed by Kazakh smart fraction member Dimash. They sure wouldn’t invite Ken Alibek to the Kremlin.

  67. reiner Tor says

    What is it based on? In the case of Hungary, it’s mostly Jews. Does it contain literature etc. prizes?

  68. reiner Tor says

    Moreover, Jews who left Hungary after receiving a high school diploma.

  69. Yes, basically one asks a mathematical question for what values of parameters A and B the residuals |IQ-A*PISA-B| are the smallest on a given set. You can do it on a subpopulation of England or you can do it on country averages and so on. It seems that 1/A is around 6 or 7.

    More important question would be what is correlation between IQ and PISA for a given population of test takers as well what is correlation for country averages. I would guess that correlation for European counters because of narrow range will be small. By adding high PISA countries of East Asia and low PISA countries of Latin American the correlation would go up.

    Is PISA a good proxy for IQ or is IQ a good proxy for PISA?

  70. reduced manufacturing sector.

    Ukraine losing even more of its manufacturing sector than Russia, without significant natural resource exports.

    In Russia, manufacturing is often subsized in various ways, from money ultimately generated by natural resource extraction, while in Ukraine more factories and industries (which had been awesome in Soviet times) have to close down.

    Also ultimately there more “safety net” for existence of manufacturing jobs (although not their profitability or acceptable salaries – the salaries are inhumanly low), as a result of the fact often businessmen who own manufacturing plants derive their main wealth in natural resources and have a lot of political power over government. (See for example – situation with GAZ group. Workers go to protest about US sanctions against their owner, but eventually the government increases orders of things like school buses so the factory can continue at full capacity).

    high technology

    Hi tech industry is more sensitive to business tax levels, but seems quite decoupled from exchange rates. Larger concentrations of hi technology corporations are in countries with overvalued exchange rates.

    I assume this is because relative to valuations and profits, the number of employees can be quite small.

    For example, before their sale, ARM was 4000 people (around 3000 technical employees), around the world (mainly in countries with high currency valuations). But the company has cost $32 billion at the time. In relation to the number of employees, its price was equal to $8 million per worker (or $10,6 million per technical employee).

    A difference of a few thousand dollars from exchange rates for each worker, probably does not seem so significant when labour number and cost is so small relative to the company’s value.

  71. To copy from an earlier comment I wrote.

    The Russian world has attained the world’s most powerful army by 1943-4, had become 1 of the world’s only two superpowers by 1945, had mastered the hydrogen bomb by 1955, had launched the world’s first satellite to space by 1957, the first lunar impact by 1959, the first man to space by 1961, the first woman by 1963, the first planetary probe by 1961, the world’s first space station by 1971, the first landing on Venus by 1982.

    Or becoming a world centre in most areas of science by 1950-1960, a leading developer in computers and electronics by the 1960, domination of international chess from 1948, domination of world sport/Olympic medals by 1956 (ranking 1st in medals in 6 of 8 Summer Olympic Games, and 8 out of 9 Winter Olympic Games), attainment of universal literacy in 1960-1970 – all the time having the best classical music performers, the best in ballet, one of the best in poetry, cinema and literature, and even good quite rock music by 1980-1990.

    These are – most of them – high “human capital” indicating achievements.

  72. From looking at Norway, looks like they are counting all categories.

    What aren’t the counting? Not sure, maybe organizations, and individuals born elsewhere. Not a great methodology, if so. Some people born elsewhere might be co-ethnics. Others born in the same country might not be.

  73. reiner Tor says

    The Russian world has attained the world’s most powerful army by 1943-4

    Rather 1945. By 1944 it was a close second. Not that the army alone means anything.

  74. “(4) All the correlations – between IQ and shares of ethnic Russians and Kazakhs; between fertility rates and IQ; and between fertility rates and shares of ethnic Russians and Kazakhs – are exactly as one would expect.”

    I would expect little correlation as birth rates change sharply and IQ presumably does not. Mexican birth rate is no 2.18 bpm, very nearly ZPG, but was far higher a few decades ago. Rising IQ? Was the post-war baby boom predominantly among the stupid? Perhaps. Hispanic birth rates in teh US have gone dn. Which way does this drive IQ in a space of ten or fifteen years?

  75. This is all a semantic confusion stemming from epistemic inattention and ontological neglect. What is IQ and in what sense does it exist because the only thing that we can be sure is that a specific individual took the so-called IQ test that yielded an IQ score. So it is possible that Juan Sanchez, your neighbor took an IQ test in 1987 and he had IQ score of X. Karlins of this world would like us to believe that this X is something that exists thereafter and can be called IQ of Juan Sanchez however all that is known for sure is that Juan Sanchez in 1987 scored X on IQ test. The semantic confusion is solidified by careless linguistic usage. What phrases does IQ appear in? These phrases are trying to smuggle in and solidify properties of IQ that actually do not exist. This is when the construction of social reality begins. The constructors might be huckster or true believers themselves being the victims of hucksterism.

  76. Philip Owen says

    Foreign earnings can ultimately only be spent on foreign goods, services and assets. They can be temporarily saved. Many oil producers saved their surpluses from 2007 to 2014. The global effect is to withdraw demand from the system. Hence the subdued demand for manufactured goods during that period.

    Sooner or later, the money needs to be spent. There are three routes.

    1) Import consumer goos, usualy via lower taxes. The UK in the ’80’s.
    2) Buy foreign goods and services to build productive infrastructure. The Dubai solution.
    3) Direct investment in foreign production and service delivery facilities. Also the UK.

    Ihave excluded portfolio investment in quoted shares and bonds as a form of saving.

    The 3rd option can be permanent. If your managerial skills can improve productivity in the foreign country, your return can be greater than your initial investment. The UK has acheived this to such an extent that the FTSE 100 (top 100 quoted companies) earn more overseas than in the UK. Most oil producers, including so far, Russia, are unable to do this. I use the term, so far, as Russia has at least one major opportunity, nuclear power, to build and operate non oil assets in foreign countries.

    That said, Russia has an opportunity to offer the opposite. Foreign investment that improves local productivity benefits both parties. Hence Russia chases Saudi, Gulf and Chinese investment in materials processing and infrastructure. Still the outer rings of course.

    Kazhakstan seems muddled. Astana is conspicuous consumption not produtve infrastructure. My limited knowledge and obsevation of Kazhakstan suggests a country of huge inequality and no maintenance, far less investment in basic infrastructure such as railway rolling stock. To what extent this is due to the lack of a smart fraction or more likely unreliable property laws s a defenc from deep corruption I cannot say. I vote for Yeltsin and worse levels of corruption. Kazhakstan has agriculture and raw materials and access to the Caspian with which to feed Iran. There are opportunities. They are not, on the whole, being taken. The countries of the Fergana valley are doing more.

  77. Ali Choudhury says

    Iodine deficiency appears to have been wiped out by 2007 so maybe ethnic Kazakhs will demonstrate greater IQ gains in future years.

  78. Blinky Bill says

    We all know the effect that the emigration of Russians, German, and Koreans back to their respective homelands had on the Kazakhstani Smart fraction. But what about the immigration of the Kazakh Оралман (Returnees) from Russia, China, Mongolia and the other Stans back to Kazakhstan. What kind of cognitive profile do they possess ? We know that ethnic Russians in Kazakhstan possess a higher average IQ than those in Russia 103 Vs 100. What about ethnic Kazakhs in Russia and China, do they possess higher average IQs than their co ethnics at home ?

    An additional question, is there a North-South cline for ethnic Kazakh IQ in Kazakhstan as we know exists for ethnic Russians in Russia or perhaps an East-West one? Can this be ascertained from present data by ignoring co-variables ? Anatoly/ Russosphere experts any Idea ?

  79. Blinky Bill says

    One example of the elite Human Capital that the Russians/Koreans have gifted Kazakhstan.

    Gennadiy Golovkin was born on 8 April 1982, in the city of Karaganda in the Kazakh SSR, Soviet Union (present-day Kazakhstan) to a Russian coal miner father and Korean mother, who worked in a chemical laboratory.

  80. is there a North-South cline for ethnic Kazakh IQ

    Visually, yes. Using lots of assumptions, quantitatively also yes.

    Using just simple regional data, region GPS from wiki, regression of IQ vs Latitude statistically significant,

    IQkz = +59.45 +0.53*Lat; #n=14; Rsq=0.3986; p=0.01545 * (Sig)

    The simple average of %Kaz+%Rus is 89.1%, with about 10.9% error margin iqnoring the contribution of the rest of the ethnics, the IQ contribution of Kaz and Rus,

    IQkz = +86.11 -0.053PctKaz +0.11PctRus; #n=14; Rsq=0.7352; p=0.0006701 *** (VVSig)

    Thus roughly, with margin of error of 10.9%, the average IQs of Native Kaz 80.8, Rus 97.1

    With that rough estimate of native Kaz IQ, there are no N/S or E/W IQ clines. However for the Rus, there is strong N/S cline,

    IQrus = +46.59 +0.72*Lat; #n=14; Rsq=0.4529; p=0.008351 ** (VSig)

    and borderline E/W cline,

    IQrus = +67.0 +0.22*Lon; #n=14; Rsq=0.2752; p=0.05411 . (Borderline)

  81. Blinky Bill says

    Thank you for such a prompt and detailed response It is much appreciated !!

  82. Paulina Porizkova says

    Thanks to Stalin’s deportations, Kazakhstan was blessed with significant numbers of Jews, Germans and Koreans. Unsurprisingly, they all were quite successful. With the policy of “Kazakhistation”, this advantage has mostly disappeared. Kazakhstan’s future is bleak. It continues to import Kazakhs from China, and those tend to have even lower IQ.

  83. Paulina Porizkova says

    Simple: Akmola was a shithole in the middle of nowhere. Nazarbaev wanted only loyal elites in bureaucracy (mostly from his own clan). Same idea as why Peter the Great moved capital to St Petersburg – a clean break from the entrenched old elites.

  84. This includes peace, lit and econ laureates. East Asia is even lower than Eastern Europe based on this metric and does not show signs of convergence.

  85. What about ethnic Kazakhs in Russia and China, do they possess higher average IQs than their co ethnics at home ?

    Differences in intelligence between ethnic minorities and Han in China. Richard Lynn, Helen Cheng.

    The low Kyrgyz IQ of 85.7 is consistent with the IQ of 74.4 for Kyrgyzstan derived from 2009 PISA scores given by Lynn and Vanhanen (2012) and approximately the same as the IQ of 84.7 for Kazakhstan derived from 2009 PISA scores given byLynn and Vanhanen(2012) and closely similar to the IQ of 82.2 of Kazakhs in Kazakhstan obtained by Grigoriev and Lynn (2014).The low IQ of these peoples of central Asia confirms the work of Luria(1979) carried out in the early 1930s in which he concluded that their IQs are lower than those of European Russians.

    Table 2
    Ethnic | Loc | Pop | IQ | Ref
    Hasake | Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region and the Aksai Kazakh Autonomous County in Gansu Province | 1420458 | 99.4 | Hashan et al. (2003)
    Hasake | . | . | 91.4 | Zhao et al. (1989)
    Hasake | . | . | 95.4 | .
    Kyrgyz | Kizilsu in Kirghiz Autonomous Prefecture, Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region | 160823 | 85.6 | Ji et al. (1995)

    “Ili (also as Yili; Chinese: 伊犁哈萨克自治州; pinyin: Yīlí Hǎsàkè Zìzhìzhōu) is an autonomous prefecture for Kazak people (in China)”

    3 samples Avg Kazak Chinese IQ 95.4, max sample IQ 99.4 🙂

    This is the region where the Han Dynasty Chinese general Li Ling and his army due to Han imperial court intriques and betrayals, defected to the Xiongnu and he was award as the second in command “Left Wing King” in that region,

    As a young and high-profile defector, the Chanyu held generous regard of Li Ling, giving Li his daughter’s hand in marriage[3][4][5][6][7] and making Li Lord Youxiao (右校王), which was at the same level as Chanyu’s chief adviser (and a notorious Han traitor), Wei Lü (衛律).

    The Yenisei Kirghiz Khagans claimed Li Ling as their ancestor.[8][9][7]

    Some archaeologists have tentatively identified a unique Han-Dynasty architecture palace discovered in Russia’s Khakassia (southern Siberia) as the residence of Li Ling in the land of the Xiongnu.[7][10][11][12]

  86. 3 samples Avg Hasake (Kazak Chinese) IQ 95.4, max sample IQ 99.4 🙂

    Avg north western Han IQs in Gansu 96.9, Xinjiang 98.2. Differences with Hasake (Kazak Chinese) are small. Depending on the sample size and sampling, one of the Hasake sample could have higher avg IQ than the local north western Han Chinese.

  87. I guess the question would be, why would one expect Kazakhs to have significantly lower IQ than other people on the Eurasian Steppe?

    I wonder if anyone has tried to genotype them with the GWAS hits that we know.

  88. AnonymousUkr says

    what do you mean and even Ukraine almost all Russian literature is of some Ukrainian origin Dostoyevsky Chekhov (called himself lazy Ukrainian) Gogol (father of Russian literature) Solzhenitsyn (mother Ukrainian from Kuban and unknown father) and many others like Chaikovsky half French half Ukrainian. Russia brain-drained Ukraine for long time and also genocided Ukrainian intelligentsia in Soviet times especially. not to mention Korolev was half Ukrainian 25% Belorus and 25% Russian.

  89. AnonymousUkr says

    Anatoly, are those Russians in Kazakhstan are really Russians or they are mix of different deported nationalities?

  90. Korolev was also raised by his Ukrainian grandparents IIRC.

    Greetings from Moscow, more beautiful than ever.