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Spatially disaggregated population estimates in the absence of national population and housing census data

Spatially disaggregated population estimates in the absence of national population and housing census data
Spatially disaggregated population estimates in the absence of national population and housing census data

Population numbers at local levels are fundamental data for many applications, including the delivery and planning of services, election preparation, and response to disasters. In resource-poor settings, recent and reliable demographic data at subnational scales can often be lacking. National population and housing census data can be outdated, inaccurate, or missing key groups or areas, while registry data are generally lacking or incomplete. Moreover, at local scales accurate boundary data are often limited, and high rates of migration and urban growth make existing data quickly outdated. Here we review past and ongoing work aimed at producing spatially disaggregated local-scale population estimates, and discuss how new technologies are now enabling robust and cost-effective solutions. Recent advances in the availability of detailed satellite imagery, geopositioning tools for field surveys, statistical methods, and computational power are enabling the development and application of approaches that can estimate population distributions at fine spatial scales across entire countries in the absence of census data. We outline the potential of such approaches as well as their limitations, emphasizing the political and operational hurdles for acceptance and sustainable implementation of new approaches, and the continued importance of traditional sources of national statistical data.

Census, Geostatistics, Population, Remote sensing, Surveys
0027-8424
3529-3537
Wardrop, N.A.
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Jochem, W.C.
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Bird, T.J.
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Chamberlain, H.R.
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Clarke, D.
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Kerr, D.
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Bengtsson, L.
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Juran, S.
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Seaman, V.
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Tatem, A.J.
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Wardrop, N.A.
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Jochem, W.C.
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Bird, T.J.
b491394a-2b91-42d5-8262-d1c0e9ff17cd
Chamberlain, H.R.
cb939de7-ac47-440e-aeb8-a2e36c110785
Clarke, D.
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Kerr, D.
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Bengtsson, L.
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Juran, S.
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Seaman, V.
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Tatem, A.J.
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Wardrop, N.A., Jochem, W.C., Bird, T.J., Chamberlain, H.R., Clarke, D., Kerr, D., Bengtsson, L., Juran, S., Seaman, V. and Tatem, A.J. (2018) Spatially disaggregated population estimates in the absence of national population and housing census data. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 115 (14), 3529-3537. (doi:10.1073/pnas.1715305115).

Record type: Review

Abstract

Population numbers at local levels are fundamental data for many applications, including the delivery and planning of services, election preparation, and response to disasters. In resource-poor settings, recent and reliable demographic data at subnational scales can often be lacking. National population and housing census data can be outdated, inaccurate, or missing key groups or areas, while registry data are generally lacking or incomplete. Moreover, at local scales accurate boundary data are often limited, and high rates of migration and urban growth make existing data quickly outdated. Here we review past and ongoing work aimed at producing spatially disaggregated local-scale population estimates, and discuss how new technologies are now enabling robust and cost-effective solutions. Recent advances in the availability of detailed satellite imagery, geopositioning tools for field surveys, statistical methods, and computational power are enabling the development and application of approaches that can estimate population distributions at fine spatial scales across entire countries in the absence of census data. We outline the potential of such approaches as well as their limitations, emphasizing the political and operational hurdles for acceptance and sustainable implementation of new approaches, and the continued importance of traditional sources of national statistical data.

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Accepted/In Press date: 27 February 2018
e-pub ahead of print date: 19 March 2018
Published date: 3 April 2018
Keywords: Census, Geostatistics, Population, Remote sensing, Surveys

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 419604
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/419604
ISSN: 0027-8424
PURE UUID: db36a1e2-59ed-416c-998b-52def17c9766
ORCID for A.J. Tatem: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-7270-941X

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 16 Apr 2018 16:30
Last modified: 14 Mar 2019 01:35

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Contributors

Author: N.A. Wardrop
Author: W.C. Jochem
Author: T.J. Bird
Author: D. Clarke
Author: D. Kerr
Author: L. Bengtsson
Author: S. Juran
Author: V. Seaman
Author: A.J. Tatem ORCID iD

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