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University unveils population map

05/10/2009

An atlas which favours population over land mass as a means of sizing its countries has been published by the University of Sheffield.
The online world atlas has 200 maps which show the world redrawn by factors including city size, amount of people living in the countryside, internet use and total children.
The new images were put together for a project by the Leverhulme Trust to extend the Worldmapper project, which is producing the maps. The latest map relied on population distribution data. The new world guides break with the 500-year tradition of conventional cartography which shows compass directions as straight lines.
Benjamin Hennig, a postgraduate researcher at the University's Department of Geography, was part of the team that created the maps by using the gridded population of the world database of the Global Rural-Urban Mapping Project.
Mr Hennig said the new projections give an "interesting insight into different countries. The map of Afghanistan, for example, shows a country dominated by Kabul and a few other urban centres."
Copyright © Press Association 2009