Before the onset of modernity, every fourth child died before its first birthday. Over the course of modernity, the mortality of infants (children below 1 years of age) declined rapidly – first in the countries that industrialized early and now in countries around the world. This long-term perspective is shown in the following time series plot.
Deaths of infants before their first birthday (per 1,000 live births)9Full screen view Download Data
Declining infant mortality around the world
Through this world map you can see the dramatic decrease in infant mortality since 1950. Press play to see the change over time around the world or click on any country to see the decline in a particular country.
In 1970 Malawi, Afghanistan, and Yemen still suffered from infant mortality over 200 per 1,000. Today there is no country in the world with an infant mortality higher than 100 per 1,000.