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High Resolution Settlement Layer

In partnership with the Center for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN) at Columbia University, Facebook used state-of-the-art computer vision techniques to identify buildings from publicly accessible mapping services to create the world's most accurate population datasets. You can read about their project here. These are the datasets available for download on the Humanitarian Data Exchange for nearly every country in the world:

  • Overall population density
  • Male
  • Female
  • Women of reproductive age (ages 15-49)
  • Children (ages 0-5)
  • Youth (ages 15-24)
  • Elderly (ages 60+)

To reference this data, please use the following citation:

Facebook Connectivity Lab and Center for International Earth Science Information Network - CIESIN - Columbia University. 2016. High Resolution Settlement Layer (HRSL). Source imagery for HRSL Copyright 2016 DigitalGlobe. Accessed DAY MONTH YEAR. Data shared under: Creative Commons Attribution International.

You can get methodology here:

and step by step download here

License: Creative Commons Attribution International


Earth Engine Snippet

var HRSL = ee.ImageCollection("projects/sat-io/open-datasets/hrsl/hrslpop");
var HRSL_men = ee.ImageCollection("projects/sat-io/open-datasets/hrsl/hrsl_men");
var HRSL_women = ee.ImageCollection("projects/sat-io/open-datasets/hrsl/hrsl_women");
var HRSL_youth = ee.ImageCollection("projects/sat-io/open-datasets/hrsl/hrsl_youth");
var HRSL_children_under_five = ee.ImageCollection("projects/sat-io/open-datasets/hrsl/hrsl_children_under_five");
var HRSL_women_reproductive_age = ee.ImageCollection("projects/sat-io/open-datasets/hrsl/hrsl_women_reproductive_age");
var HRSL_elderly_over_sixty = ee.ImageCollection("projects/sat-io/open-datasets/hrsl/hrsl_elderly_over_sixty");

Sample Code:

Extra Info: Medium Article here

Download Tool/Code snippets if any: hdxpop

Curated by: Samapriya Roy

Keywords: High Density Population, Population, Facebook


  • Automated version check & updated added
  • Now includes data version as metadata & uses global COGs
  • Now includes data from HRSL v1.5+

Last updated: 2022-08-27