Mapping deprivation for each and every small area in England

spatial treemaps

Rob Radburn and Roger Beecham (2021) “Mapping deprivation for each and every small area in England”, Regional Studies, Regional Science, doi: 10.1080/21681376.2021.1934528


Leicestershire County Council

School of Geography, University of Leeds


June 2021



Our regional graphic maps deprivation for small neighbourhoods in England in a way that enables the extent, distribution and spatial structure of deprivation to be perceived at multiple levels of geography. All 32,844 neighbourhoods are depicted using rectangles of constant size and with an approximate geographical arrangement. This approach overcomes familiar cartographic challenges when representing demographic data, exposing local pockets of deprivation that would otherwise be obscured in a conventional map. Neighbourhoods are nested hierarchically, and this hierarchy is emphasized in our design, allowing analysis within and between regions. The graphic reveals important spatial processes – rich patterns of continuity and discontinuity at multiple spatial scales – that may not be as effectively represented using non-visual means.

Important figure

Figure 1: Spatially ordered treemap (Wood & Dykes 2008) of 32,844 lower layer super output areas (LSOAs) in England, nested within local authority and region, and given an approximate geographical arrangement. Each LSOA is depicted using a rectangle of equal size. LSOAs are coloured according to Index of Multiple Deprivation 2019 (IMD) rank and using a ColorBrewer diverging scheme (Brewer 2002).

BibTeX citation

    author = {Robert Radburn and Roger Beecham},
    doi = {10.1080/21681376.2021.1934528},
    journal = {Regional Studies, Regional Science},
    number = {1},
    pages = {269-272},
    title = {Mapping deprivation for each and every small area in England},
    volume = {8},
    year = {2021}