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The Asian administrative boundaries and population database is part of an ongoing effort to improve global, spatially referenced demographic data holdings. Such databases are useful for a variety of applications including strategic-level agricultural research and applications in the analysis of the human dimensions of global change. While the private sector is addressing some of this need for spatial data by marketing georeferenced demographic databases for developed and some large developing countries (e.g., Mexico or India), administrative boundaries and population figures for many countries are still hard to obtain. This project (which has been carried out as a cooperative activity between NCGIA and UNEP/DEIA/GRID-Geneva between Oct. 1995 and present) has pooled available data sets, many of which had been assembled for the global demography project. All data were checked, international boundaries and coastlines were replaced with a standard template, the attribute database was redesigned, and new, more reliable population estimates for subnational units were produced for all countries. From the resulting data sets, raster surfaces representing population distribution and population density were created in collaboration between NCGIA and GRID-Geneva.
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