What is Cartogram/meaning/concept/elaboration

Mapping is the discipline that studies the maps. This course presents a wide range of options, since in maps it is possible to introduce information about geographic accidents; transport infrastructure, municipalities and regions; political boundaries and, in short, any information related to geographic space . Cartogram

Analyzing the concept with an illustrative example

The cartogram is a specific modality within cartography that consists of representing a territory by proportionally indicating the values ​​of a given subject. Thus, in a cartogram of world population, the size of each country would appear in proportion to the number of inhabitants. This map could be represented by rectangles to refer to each country and to have a guide on the scale of the map would specify additional information in which a rectangle with a specific area would correspond to a number of millions of inhabitants.

If we analyze the example mentioned, we can draw several conclusions:

1) despite Russia being the largest country in the world, in the cartogram its size is much smaller than the real one because its number of inhabitants is not very high;

2) the largest countries would be China and India, as both are the most populated in the world;

3) the cartogram as a whole presents an image that does not correspond to what appears on a conventional world map.

A tool to communicate ideas

The images that appear in cartograms are connected with a well propagated phenomenon: the predominance of the visual over written information. In this sense, the information provided in this type of map is much more direct and simple than what can be expressed in a text or a statistical table.

On the other hand, cartograms facilitate comparisons between data . Obviously, they serve to complement the explanations of a text with representative images.

Different modalities

A contiguity cartogram is one in which the geographical area represented appears distorted but compact. For example, in a Latin American population density cartogram, all countries are represented united, but their size depends on the density of each country.

A cartogram without contiguity is one in which the image of a territory is divided into parts and these are colored to indicate more specific information. For example, in a cartogram of the countries of the European Union , according to their railways the nations would be separated and in each one of them the concrete data of kilometers of railways would be indicated.

Finally, in Dorling’s cartogram geometric figures were used to represent geographic areas.

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