Humanities › Geography Population Density Information and Statistics Share Flipboard Email Print New Market, Dhaka, Bangladesh. Rehman Asad / Getty Images Geography Population Basics Physical Geography Political Geography Country Information Key Figures & Milestones Maps Urban Geography By Matt Rosenberg Geography Expert M.A., Geography, California State University - Northridge B.A., Geography, University of California - Davis Matt Rosenberg is an award-winning geographer and the author of "The Handy Geography Answer Book" and "The Geography Bee Complete Preparation Handbook." our editorial process Matt Rosenberg Updated May 09, 2019 Population density is an often reported and commonly compared statistic for places around the world. Population density is the measure of the number of people per unit area, commonly represented as people per square mile (or square kilometer). The population density of the planet (including all land area) is about 38 people per square mile (57 per sq km). The population density of the United States is approximately 87.4 people per square mile, according to the 2010 U.S. Census. Computing Population Density To determine an area's population density, divide an area's total population by the land area in square miles (or square kilometers). For example, Canada's population of 35.6 million (July 2017 estimated by the CIA World Factbook), divided by the land area of 3,855,103 square miles (9,984,670 sq km) yields a density of 9.24 people per square mile. Although this number would seem to indicate that 9.24 people live on each square mile of Canadian land area, the density within the country varies dramatically; a vast majority lives in the southern part of the country. Density is only a raw gauge to measure a population's disbursement across the land. Density can be computed for any area, as long as one knows the size of the land area and the population within that area. The population density of cities, states, entire continents, and even the world can be computed. What Country Has the Highest Density? The tiny country of Monaco has the world's highest population density. With an area of three-fourths of a square mile (2 sq km) and a total population of 30,645, Monaco has a density of almost 39,798 people per square mile. However, because Monaco and other microstates have very high densities due to their extremely small size, Bangladesh (population 157,826,578) is often considered the most densely populated country, with more than 2,753 people per square mile. What Country Is the Most Sparse? Mongolia is the world's least densely populated country, with only five people per square mile (2 per sq km). Australia and Namibia tie for a close second with 7.8 people per square mile (3 per sq km). These two countries are further examples of density being a limited statistic, as Australia may be huge, but the population resides mainly on its coasts. Namibia has the same density figure but a much smaller total land area. Most Tightly Packed Continent Perhaps not surprisingly, the most densely populated continent is Asia. Here are the population densities of the continents: North America - 60.7 people per square mileSouth America - 61.3 people per square mileEurope - 187.7 people per square mileAsia - 257.8 people per square mileAfrica - 103.7 people per square mileAustralia - 7.8 people per square mile Most Densely Populated Hemisphere About 90 percent of the Earth's people live on 10 percent of the land. Additionally, about 90 percent of the people live north of the equator in the Northern Hemisphere.