The Flynn effect has reversed in terms of spatial IQ, according to a big recent meta-study by Jakob Pietschnig and Georg Gittler.
James Thompson has a good summary in Deutschland über alles, dann unter allen?
In the present meta-analysis, we show an inverse u-shaped trajectory of IQ test performance changes in a large number of samples (k = 96; N = 13,172) on a well known test for spatial perception (the three-dimensional cubes test, 3DC) in German-speaking countries over 38 years (1977–2014). Assessment of both item response theory-based measures as well as more standard measures of classical test theory showed initial increases and a subsequent decrease of performance when controlling for age, sample type (general population vs. mixed samples vs. university students) and sex. Our results suggest saturation and diminishing returns of IQ increasing factors (e.g., life history speed) whilst negative associations of IQ changes with psychometric g may have led to the observed IQ score decrease in more recent years.
Below is the version of the graph that has been corrected for age, sex, and sample time. The all time peak seems to have occured around the mid-1990s.
The PISA tests have indicated that (ethnic) Germans might have some of the highest IQs in Europe. This is credible in light of their historical intellectual accomplishments in the 19th century through to the 1930s, even though Germans were typically shorter (i.e. probably less well fed) and certainly poorer per capita than the British. The Finns are brighter on average, but have a small standard deviation, hence much fewer geniuses.
However, I suspect that since the 1920s and certainly since the 1970s German fertility has become strongly dysgenic. This has started outrunning the benefits from better nutrition (essentially maxed out by the 1970s) and more intensive schooling. Furthermore, they have been brought down by immigrants, to the extent that in 2012 Germany as a whole was overtaken by Poland in the PISA tests.
Further from Pietschnig & Gittler:
Results from our linear regression analyses suggest decreases of about 4.8 IQ points per decade when controlling for age, sample type, and sex, thus indicating a substantial negative Flynn effect that is even stronger compared to previously observed positive trends (e.g., Flynn, 1984, 1987; Pietschnig & Voracek, 2015). This trend was observed in linear regression analyses, but our results showed that the present changes over time may be even better described as a curvilinear function, thus indicating initial increases, followed by stagnation (with performance peaking around the mid-1990s), and subsequent decreases of task performance.
Incidentally, this is one of the factors you have to bear in mind when looking at historical “human accomplishment” (in science, literature, art, etc) and the puzzle of why East Asians don’t figure largely in it for all their high IQs. Not only were the key countries – UK, Germany, etc – well ahead of the likes of China and Japan in terms of nutrition (related to IQ) and general development (schooling, funding for science) but they also enjoyed a bonus from not yet having fallen on the dysgenic slope. I suspect this will likely remove any need for Jaymannian “clannishness” as a key explanatory factor.
But I digress; this is for another post.
Back to Germany – if you are in the throes of dysgenic decline, you might want to try to at least do some obvious things to slow it down, like not take in millions of 85 IQ Third World immigrants. Obviously this is not happening but I found it curious that the great scientist Heiner Rindermann has been given column space to call for exactly that in the German magazine Focus.
In it, he makes some of the following points:
- Unlike the case of the Huguenots, whom the Elector Friedrich Wilhelm welcomed to Prussia in 1685, the wave of immigrants in the past years and months are lacking in human capital.
- They perform at ~110 points below US and German standards in the PISA tests, or a difference of three years in terms of schooling age. The gap with Africa is more like four and a half years.
- Even “elite” students like engineering students from the Gulf states are two to four years behind their German counterparts.
- A recent study in Chemnitz, the city that hosts Rindermann’s university, showed that asylum seekers with university degrees had an average IQ of 93 – that is equivalent to that of Realschule students, i.e. prole children.
- He mentions that this gap is not closed in the second generation, and even dares to mention cousin marriage as a contributory factor.
- These groups will have higher unemployment, and their cognitive errors in daily life such as in traffic or professional decisions will negatively impact other people.
- HE ACTUALLY GOES THERE and mentions the high incidence of violence against dissenters and sexual assaults in places where they congregate, such as immigrant neighborhoods and the refugee camps. He also mentions the statistic that whereas only 12% of the French population are Muslim they constitute 60% of the prison population, and alludes to the Rotherham mass rapes in Britain.
- Diversity is associated with more crime and inequality, contrary to the positive rhetoric around it.
Furthermore, the comments to his article are generally positive.
Given the current climate, in which Angela Merkel openly demands that Mark Zuckerberg censor “hate” against immigrants on Facebook and the New York Times approving quotes a former East German apparatchik openly commiserating that anti-immigration activists from a village getting swamped by Third World immigrants are not getting arrested, I will admit to some degree of surprise that Rindermann was allowed his not very PC say. I hope he doesn’t get into trouble on account of this.