- World's largest cities
This article ranks the world's largest cities, in population and/or land area, using a variety of ranking methods.
Ambiguities in measuring the "size" of a city
The question of determining the world's largest cities does not allow a single, simple answer. It depends on which definitions of "city" and "size" are used, and how those definitions are applied. Complex political/cultural/social situations, sometimes controversial or disputed, further confuse the discussion. Debate on this field is highly vulnerable to bias or manipulation, as people tend to prefer whichever definition most flatters their own city.
The boundaries of a city can also be defined in any of several ways:
- "City" defined as a physically contiguous urban area, without regard to territorial or other boundaries. The delineation is usually done using some type of urban density, such as population density or density of buildings (for example, "gaps between structures may not exceed 200 metres"). Satellite and/or aerial maps may be used. For statistical convenience, such areas are sometimes adjusted to appropriate administrative boundaries, yielding an agglomeration.
- "City" as defined by the habits of its demographic population, as by metropolitan area, labour market area, or similar. Such definitions are usually based on commuting between home and work. Commuter flow thresholds into the core urban area are established by the national census authority, determining which areas are included.
- City Proper (Administrative)
- "City" as strictly defined by a given government (city proper). Typically based on a municipality or equivalent entity, or sometimes a group of municipalities under a regional government.
Cities making the top 20 in a list
The numbers after each cell give the ranking of that city in that list. This table is designed to be a way to compare the different lists and discover which cities are well-recognised by all of them, without favouring one list over the others. Rankings in bold are the rankings of the cities in the top 20 of each sources' list. The first four columns are the four different lists used by Wikipedia; after them, external sources are given.
- Historical urban community sizes
- List of cities by continent
- List of cities in Africa
- Largest cities in the Americas
- List of cities in Asia
- List of cities in Europe
- List of cities in Oceania
- List of largest cities throughout history
- List of towns and cities with 100,000 or more inhabitants
- List of countries and territories by continent
- List of cities with the most high-rise buildings
- List of cities with most skyscrapers
- List of largest cities in Central America
- Large Cities Climate Leadership Group
- List of highest cities in the world
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