Population Distribution across Asia

Abstract : This chapter aims at providing an overview of population distribution in Asia at various scales. Asia is taken here in the usual United Nations definition, and comprises the 51 countries and territories forming a triangle with the Bosporus to the west, Japan to the north- east and Indonesia to the south- east, as the three corners. It includes China and India, which are the two most populated nations in the world. With the addition of Indonesia, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Japan, six out of the ten largest populations are in Asia. While there are a few Asian countries with less than a million inhabitants, such as the Maldives in the Indian Ocean and Bhutan in the Himalayas, Asia is made up mostly of nations with large populations, and 24 among them have more than 20 million inhabitants. This chapter will examine the main features of the spatial distribution of population in Asia, by stressing the geographical and demographic variations observed across the continent, and by presenting some of the main factors that have influenced the settlement patterns observed today. The spatial distribution of Asia’s population is particularly skewed in comparison with that of other continents. We will also review the recent population dynamics and see how they are likely to alter the population distribution within Asia.
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Christophe Guilmoto, Sébastien Oliveau. Population Distribution across Asia. Routledge Handbook of Asian Demography, Routledge, pp.268-284, 2018, 9780415659901. ⟨hal-01756485⟩

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