Mapping Rural Pakistan
When it comes to generating a visual representation of important socio-economic parameters for rural Pakistan, such as poverty, literacy, crime or access to internet, the picture is rather blank. Datasets exist in disparate jurisdictions, scattered across many departments, and are often in registers and lists that do not contain geo-coordinates. This state of affairs discourages evidence-based policy interventions, and severely limits the effectiveness of expensive GIS projects undertaken by many organizations.
In this talk, I will explain why relevant socio-economic datasets, such as the population census, have not been mapped properly even years after of their generation. Then it will explain how this bottleneck may be removed, by identifying the spatial references contained in those datasets, and building their integrated maps. In this respect, it will also cover the importance of a “mauza” (revenue estate) for rural mapping, and then provide an overview of our recent pilot project to demonstrate a cost-effective and scalable methodology to build a mauza map for District Jhelum. Our methodology consisted of stitching together thousands of pieces of British era village maps, and then registering them with satellite imagery for geo-referencing. Finally, talk will show the utility of this mauza map in generating spatial visualizations of important socio-economic parameters for the district.