What is population density?
Population density is the number of people who live in a particular area. We can calculate the population density for a city, a country, or the entire world if we know the size of the area and the number of people living in the area i.e. the population, as the density is the measure of the number of people per square kilometers or miles.
There are now 7 billion people on earth. The landmasses account for just 29% or one third of the of earth's total area. Within this landmass the population density varies; there are areas which are unlivable and uninhabited and others which have a very high population density. Antarctica, accounts for 9% of the earth's total landmass but as it is a frozen continent covered with ice, is an uninhabited place. Places with a good climate, often next to rivers have historically had a very high population density.
The Most Populous Places
The most populous countries and places do not always have the highest population density. The number of people is relative to the space or size of the area occupied by them.
Asia, the largest and the most populous continent has some of the most densely populated countries. Europe, a small continent accounts for 6% of the earth's landmass but has 11% of the world's population making its population density the second highest in the world.
Africa, the second largest continent has a low population density over all, though areas close to the River Nile in Egypt are densely populated. Many of the world's city states and sovereignties are very densely populated because they have more people living in relatively smaller areas. Monaco, the Vatican City, Singapore, Hong Kong and Bahrain have a high population density.
China is the world's most populated, and India the world's second most populated country. However, the country with the highest population density is Bangladesh. It has a population density of more than 1034 people per square kilometer. Indian cities such as Delhi and Kolkata have high population densities though Manila in the Philippines has the highest population density with 43,079 persons per square kilometers.
The Least Populous Places
Areas of arid deserts and high mountains have a low population density. Mongolia a large country has a low population making it the country with the lowest population density. Iceland, Surinam, Botswana and Namibia are other countries with a low population density. The cold northern Canada is one of the most sparsely populated places and has one of the lowest population densities.
Australia, a continent and a country, accounts for 5.9% of the earth's landmass, but its population is very low, giving it one of the lowest population densities in the world; just 3 persons per square kilometers.
Last Updated on : 30/05/2013