Numerous applications require dynamics in the count and density of human populations living in mountainous areas, as well as corresponding urbanisation dynamics, to be quantified in a transparent and reproducible fashion.

This project, which involved numerous partners, sought to address the traditional absence of such information. 

In the first part of the work, the impacts of employing various alternative population datasets and mountain delineations on global and regional scale population estimates were explored. This effort should help to meet the information needs of global assessments, including those of the IPCC, as well as a host of other applications. Then, associations between mountain population densities and several potential climatological, topographic, and other co-variates were investigated, which may contribute to improved future projections of mountain populations under various broader demographic and climatic scenarios. 

The project culminated in a peer-reviewed publication in the journal PLOS One. A short summary accompanying the publication is available here. Furthermore, a "knowledge package" was developed that provides the full details necessary to reproduce and efficiently extend the study (data, code, instructions, etc.). This resource is available from the GEO Knowledge Hub.

Contact: Dr. James Thornton, MRI (

supported by

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