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New Licensed Resource: LandScan 2011 Global Population Database

By Brian Quigley, UC Berkeley

Six campuses (Berkeley, Irvine, Los Angeles, Riverside, San Diego, and Santa Barbara) have purchased the LandScan 2011 Global Population Database. Produced by the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), LandScan provides ambient population (24-hour average) data by country, admin1 unit (state/province), pixel (sq km), and custom area. Data is broken down by gender ratio and age group. Access is provided by East View Geospatial through the East View LandScan Global 2011 Web App at Off-campus access is available through campus client VPN.  Proxy server access has been unreliable or unconfirmed at most campuses, but it does work through the UC Berkeley proxy server.

For more advanced users, data can be downloaded from the Web App for use in GIS software. GIS users can also access the data directly through their GIS software using the Web Map Service (WMS) or Web Coverage Service (WCS), though this access has been spotty, especially off-campus:

Here is the fuller ORNL description of the database: “At approximately 1 km resolution (30″ X 30″), LandScan is the finest resolution global population distribution data available and represents an ambient population (average over 24 hours). The LandScan algorithm, an R&D 100 Award Winner, uses spatial data and imagery analysis technologies and a multi-variable dasymetric modeling approach to disaggregate census counts within an administrative boundary. Since no single population distribution model can account for the differences in spatial data availability, quality, scale, and accuracy as well as the differences in cultural settlement practices, LandScan population distribution models are tailored to match the data conditions and geographical nature of each individual country and region.” For more information, East View has an FAQ at