CONCEPTS

# What is population density?

We explain what the population density is and how it is calculated. Birth, mortality and countries with higher population density.

1. ### What is population density?

It is known as population density, population density or population relative to a statistical calculation that relates to the average number of inhabitants of a territory and the physical space it covers. It is the average population per unit area of ​​a given geography.

The population density serves to understand how much a territory is populated , assuming a total distribution of the population along the surface of the territory. The regions with the highest density, in that sense, will be those with the least area allocated per inhabitant, while the least populated will allocate a lot of area to each.

Numerous factors affect the population density of a region , such as its relief (the plains and lowlands are much more densely populated than the mountains and highlands), its climate (temperate climates prevail over the extremes) and its availability of resources. Similarly, there are political considerations (national stability, peace ) and economic considerations (work, access to goods and services ) that affect the preferences of the population at the time of distribution.

1. ### How is population density calculated?

The calculation of population density is simple . It consists of dividing the total number of people who inhabit a given territory (expressed in inhabitants), by the area of ​​the populated area (usually expressed in km2):

Population density = number of inhabitants / area in km2

Therefore, the density is expressed in inhabitants per square kilometer (hab / km2) .

1. ### Birth and mortality

Other factors that affect population density are birth rates (annual births) and mortality (annual deaths). In principle, populations with population growth and, therefore, an increase in population density, have birth rates that exceed those of mortality (more people are born than die) .

In the opposite case, in which the mortality exceeds the birth rate, the logical thing is that the populations contract and the population density decreases . This reasoning does not take into account, of course, immigration and emigration, which also positively and negatively affects the total population and, by extension, population density.

1. ### Cities with higher population density

According to 2016 statistics, the most densely populated cities are in the Asian continent , in developing countries, or in the Chinese superpower. Until the year of 1993, the Chinese city of Kowloon was the most densely populated in the world, since its surface of just 47 km2 inhabited 2,019,533 inhabitants, which yields the figure of 14,033 inhabitants per square kilometer.

But inside Kowloon there was a citadel known as the walled city of Kowloon, in whose 0.026 km2 inhabited almost 50,000 inhabitants , for an incredible population density of almost 2 million inhabitants per square kilometer. This city within the city was demolished, since its inhabitants lived overcrowded and in precarious situations.

Today the cities with the highest density on the planet are:

• Dhaka In Bangladesh, with 114,300 inhabitants / km2
• Vijayawada In India, with 80,700 inhabitants / km2
• Chittagong In Bangladesh, with 75,600 inhabitants / km2
• Mumbai In India, with 67,300 inhabitants / km2
• Hong Kong. In China, with 66,200 inhabitants / km2
• Aligarh In India, with 65,600 inhabitants / km2
• Macau In China, with 65,500 inhabitants / km2
1. ### Countries with higher population density

The most densely populated countries (or cities) should not be confused with those of greater population. As will be noted below, they have high densities due to their limited geographical dimensions , which allows them to have a relatively small population, but which densely inhabits their territory. On the other hand, huge countries such as Russia or the United States have so much territory that, on average, their densities are very low, despite having a large population.

According to 2017 data, the most densely populated countries are:

• Monaco. In Europe, with a density of approximately 19,307 inhabitants / km2
• Singapore. In Asia, with a density of approximately 8,017 inhabitants / km2
• Bahrain In the Middle East, with a density of approximately 2,617 inhabitants / km2
• Vatican City. In Europe, with a density of approximately 1,818 inhabitants / km2
• Malt. In Europe, with a density of approximately 1,387 inhabitants / km2
• Maldives. In Asia, with a density of approximately 1,188 inhabitants / km2
• Bangladesh In Asia, with a density of approximately 1,145 inhabitants / km2
• Barbados In America, with a density of 660 inhabitants / km2 approximately
• Mauricio. In Africa, with a density of 636 inhabitants / km2 approximately
• San Marino. In Europe, with a density of 539 inhabitants / km2