The Concrete Jungle: An Esri Story Map

Concrete Jungle: Urban Expansion and the Rise of the Megacity is a Story Map by Spencer Elford, one of our undergraduate students here at McMaster University. Submitted to the International Year of Global Understanding Story Map competition, Spencer’s Story Map earned 2nd place.

One of the chapters in my book explores the growth and change of urban areas. We live in an increasingly urban world: More people now live in urban areas than rural areas, and the potential for the continued growth of urban areas, particularly in parts of the developing world, is tremendous. The growth of cities in the developing world will be driven by natural increase and net rural-to-urban migration. But, such rapid urbanization also comes with a cost: urbanization in much of the developing world has led to slums and unplanned settlements, growing regional inequities, insufficient urban infrastructure, poor health, and the degradation of resources, challenging governments and the people that live in these cities.

Spencer’s Story Map does a great job in visualizing these global changes in an interactive display, with topics including urban growth, population density, slums, and a look ahead at the future of cities. Check out the full presentation at:


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