Progress in China, Bangladesh, and Vietnam

Progress in China, Bangladesh, and Vietnam. The Population Bomb, by Paul and Anne Ehrlich (1968), contributed to a widespread idea that Asia and Africa would never be able to feed their growing populations. The data on deaths from famines is from EM-DAT. The Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO) produces maps of conflicts and poverty.


This page is under construction. We are working on it (and a lot of other pages too). If you need this particular page urgently, you can always drop us a line, and we might be able to squeeze it to the top of our prio list…

Contact us at [email protected]

Japanese: このページを含め、多くの出典ページは現在改稿中です。このページの情報がいますぐ知りたいという方は [email protected] までご連絡ください。

"Population" is now complete for all countries 1800-2008

We have updated the indicator “population, total” so that it covers all countries and territories from 1800 to 2008. Population is by default used for the size of the bubbles in Gapminder World.

With “all countries and territories” we mean all the 192 UN-member plus 61 other entities (e.g. semi-autonomous territories, former countries and disputed territories). This gives a total of 253 countries and territories.

This work rests heavily on the work of Angus Maddison and is, to our knowledge, the most complete data set for population, containing over 20.000 observations. To the extent possible, we have also included meta-data for each observation with information on sources and estimation methods. Where possible, we have also included a quality rating of the observations, of which more of in the following blog-post.

Note: some of the observations, especially the earlier ones, are based on very rough estimates or extrapolations. Please check the data quality rating of the observations, described in the next blog-post.

Population updated and expanded

The indicator population has been updated and expanded to cover more countries and territories and a longer time span. It now covers 251 countries and territories, including all of the 192 UN member states. 205 of them have data going back to at least 1820 (and 51 goes back as far as 1600).

Furthermore, the documentation has been more systematic (the full documentation will be available in a few weeks).

NOTE: the unit has been changed from “1000 persons” to “number of persons”.

NOTE 2: some of the observations (particulary the earlier ones) is based on very rough estimates. See the (coming) documentation for details.