How strongly different countries around the world feel about religion, in one graph

Bethan McKernan@mck_beth
Monday 04 January 2016 18:00
Ethiopian Orthodox Christian priests are pictured during the annual festival of Timkat in Lalibela, Ethiopia, on January 20, 2012. DCARL DE SOUZA/AFP/Getty Images

Data from the Pew Research Center's 2015 Global Attitudes survey has measured how people around the world feel about religion in their lives.

Ethiopia in the Horn of Africa topped the list of nationalities which consider religion most important, with 98 per cent of respondents who said that the Ethiopian Orthodox Church is a very important part of who they are.

Senegal and Indonesia, which are both predominantly Muslim, come in at number two (97 per cent) and three (95 per cent) respectively, but many countries with religious plurality such as Nigeria (a mix of Islam and Christianity) and India (mainly Hindu) are still near the top of the list with 88 per cent and 80 per cent respectively.


Generally speaking, religion is more important to people in poorer countries than in richer ones - but the US, where 53 per cent of people feel strongly about their religion, bucks the trend, with the highest-ranking entry out of all advanced economy nations.

Religiosity is in decline in the West, but growing elsewhere, mainly due to differences in projected population growth.

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