Here is a learning activity that can be used with The Scarcity Fallacy, by Stephen J. Scanlan, J. Craig Jenkins, and Lindsey Petersen (Contexts, Winter 2010).  Click on the links to obtain a pdf of the learning activity or to read “The Scarcity Fallacy” online through Contexts.

1. How many people live on less than $2 a day?

a. 2.5 billion
b. 2.7 billion
c. 3 billion
d. 3.2 billion

2. What percentage of the people who live in extreme poverty are women?

a. 50
b. 60
c. 70
d. 80

3. Someone dies from starvation every ______ seconds.

4. Approximately how many people do not have access to safe drinking water?

a. 100 million
b. 500 million
c. 750 million
d. 1 billion

5. How many people are hungry every day?

a. 200 million
b. 600 million
c. 800 million
d. 900 million

6. _________people lack access to basic healthcare.

7. How many children die from malnutrition before their 5th birthday every year?

a. 3 million
b. 4 million
c. 5 million
d. 6 million

8. A woman dies in pregnancy or childbirth every _______

a. 1 minute
b. 2 minutes
c. 3 minutes
d. 4 minutes

9. How many people die from malaria each year? _________

10. Approximately _______ people are homeless.

a. 50 million
b. 75 million
c. 100 million
d. 125 million

Answer Key:

1. B
2. C
3. 3.6
4. D
5. C
6. 1.3 billion
7. D
8. A
9. 3 million
10. C

All answers can be found at the UN Millenium Project website.  See the websites of the following organizations for more information: UN Development Program, World Bank, UNIFEM, Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.