15 Countries with the Lowest Average IQs in the World

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Our list of countries with the lowest average IQs in the world is not meant to offend yet it may cause some debate, as it gives a very good idea of average IQ by race and bifurcating anything by race is such a sensitive issue. I am going to try and approach it with caution though.

Another article of ours that ranks the 30 smartest countries with the highest average IQ in the world in 2017 asserts that the most intelligent race in the world is the Mongolian race or the Yellow people. That means Asians if you’re confused, but since Asians include South Asian and Middle Eastern citizens as well none of which were part of that list, I thought I’d be more precise. The average IQ of India itself is 82 which doesn’t put brown people very high up. In fact, if we create the smartest race in the world ranking, Caucasian people would probably follow the Asians, again judging by the article linked above. Even America made it on there which means the average IQ of USA isn’t as bad as it is usually considered to be. In contrast with the smartest countries in the world 2017, the nations that have filled our list of lowest average IQ include only African and Caribbean nations. So the race of these countries’ citizens can safely be considered to be at the lowest spot. That statement is what I’m afraid might appear to be a generalization of a humongous group of people.

15 Countries with the Lowest Average IQ in the World


Now before you get triggered the fact of the matter is that differences in IQ are only about 50% dependent on genetics, most studies suggest, which means the rest comes from environmental factors. This, in turn, reflects that underdeveloped countries will most likely have low IQ. That’s exactly the reason African countries, most of which are wrought with civil wars and suffering from abysmal economies, dominate our list. Citizens of developed regions have more opportunities to perform tasks that are intellectually demanding and have access to proper early nutrition. These are some of the environmental factors that have been thought to influence IQ, and neither of them is exactly a strength of African nations.

Of course, there’s also the issue of whether or not IQ is a good measure of intelligence, i.e., whether a single number can represent the complexities of the human brain. The process has had its fair share of criticism, but that’s a different debate, one we have expounded here, in case you’re as intrigued as I am.

Coming back to the topic at hand, it was impossible to find a reliable source that wasn’t more than ten years old so, unfortunately, we had to rely on this study that was conducted from 2002 to 2006, to ascertain IQ by country. But we made an effort to update our list a bit. Taking the 25 countries with the least IQ according to the aforementioned study as our starting point, we calculated the percentage change these nations had experienced in their education index from 2006 to 2013 (latest figure) as per the United Nations Development Program. I admit education isn’t really the best parameter to measure IQ, but I figured an improvement in education index might have had some, if not proportionate, positive impact on intelligence. So here’s what I did: I ranked the 25 countries first by IQ and then by the change in their index, averaged both the rankings and came up with the following list of 15 countries with the lowest average IQs in the world. Bear in mind that data for education in Somalia wasn’t available, so I excluded it. Furthermore, for two countries, data as far back as 2006 was nonexistent, so we took the oldest figure available for the purpose of calculation. In case of a tie, we gave preference to the IQ.

To make matters more interesting, I would suggest reading this list along with our previous one on the dumbest countries in the world to see how the two correlate. Now, let’s get started!

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