Sustainability 2013, 5(12), 4988-5019; doi:10.3390/su5124988

Using Nighttime Satellite Imagery as a Proxy Measure of Human Well-Being

1,* email, 2email, 3email and 2,4email
Received: 23 September 2013; in revised form: 8 October 2013 / Accepted: 4 November 2013 / Published: 26 November 2013
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Abstract: Improving human well-being is increasingly recognized as essential for movement toward a sustainable and desirable future. Estimates of different aspects of human well-being, such as Gross Domestic Product, or percentage of population with access to electric power, or measuring the distribution of income in society are often fraught with problems. There are few standardized methods of data collection; in addition, the required data is not obtained in a reliable manner and on a repetitive basis in many parts of the world. Consequently, inter-comparability of the data that does exist becomes problematic. Data derived from nighttime satellite imagery has helped develop various globally consistent proxy measures of human well-being at the gridded, sub-national, and national level. We review several ways in which nighttime satellite imagery has been used to measure the human well-being within nations.
Keywords: nighttime lights imagery; LandScan population data; human well-being; Night Light Development Index (NLDI); Gross Domestic Product; informal economy; poverty rates; electrification rates; human ecological footprint
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MDPI and ACS Style

Ghosh, T.; Anderson, S.J.; Elvidge, C.D.; Sutton, P.C. Using Nighttime Satellite Imagery as a Proxy Measure of Human Well-Being. Sustainability 2013, 5, 4988-5019.

AMA Style

Ghosh T, Anderson SJ, Elvidge CD, Sutton PC. Using Nighttime Satellite Imagery as a Proxy Measure of Human Well-Being. Sustainability. 2013; 5(12):4988-5019.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Ghosh, Tilottama; Anderson, Sharolyn J.; Elvidge, Christopher D.; Sutton, Paul C. 2013. "Using Nighttime Satellite Imagery as a Proxy Measure of Human Well-Being." Sustainability 5, no. 12: 4988-5019.

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