Mapping people, not sheep: Why our planet’s well-being can look so different

Today I held a talk at the IDEA CETL Applied Ethics Research seminar at the University of Leeds. My talk was titled ‘Mapping people, not sheep: Why our planet’s well-being can look so different’ and focused on issues of mapping well-being in new ways. Part of that presentation was the explanation of my re-drawn map of the Happy Planet Index, which I created a while ago for an exhibition at the Centre for Health and Wellbeing in Public Policy at the University of Sheffield. This is the new map of the Happy Planet Index, which projects the index onto a gridded world population cartogram:

New map of the Happy Planet Index
(click for larger map)

The talk explained, how and why well-being related issues can be visualised differently to give a better understanding of them and draw a different picture than that given in usual maps. It contained a number of maps from my PhD research on ‘worldmapping beyond mere description’. Amongst the visuals included in this presentation are also some new maps on the ecological footprint and the global wealth distribution, which will be added and further explained on this website in the near future (and yes, as promised in the header, there is a sheep map in there as well). For now, here are the slides without additional commentary of what they show or how they were created:

Notes for the seminar audience: The German election map mentioned in the discussion can be found here, and there is a comparison of UK electoral maps here. The individual country population maps are here.
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