Ravenstein Ernst Georg

(30.12.1834 – 13.03.1913)


British cartographer, geographer, statistician of German origin.

Born in Frankfurt am Main in a family of cartographers. In 1852 he became a student of the doctor of geography of August Peterman.

After moving to England, Ravenstein became a naturalized British citizen and joined the Topographical Department of the British War Department, where he worked for 20 years (from 1855 to 1875).

He was a member of the Councils of the Royal Statistical and Royal Geographical Societies of Great Britain.

In 1882 - 1883 served as professor of geography at Bedford College in London.

Ravenstein was the first geographer to receive the Gold Medal of Victoria of the Royal Geographical Society for research in geography in 1902.

His statistical predictions were highly valued and used as the basis for formal planning at that time period.

In 1880  Ravenstein created the theory of population migration, which is still the basis of the modern theory of migration. He studied the relationship between distances and different types of migrants, pointing out that women are more likely than men to migrate to their countries of birth, but less often than men to leave their country of birth. They predicted that the human population could increase beyond the potential of the Earth by the middle of the 20th century.

In his work “Systematic Atlas” he outlined new ideas about teaching methods in cartography. His map of Equatorial Africa was the best map of this part of the African continent of that time.

In 1861  Ravenstein became the founder of the "German Gymnastics Society" in London. He was a founding member of the National Olympic Association.

Although he spent most of his adult life in England, he died at home in Germany in the city of Hofheim am Taunus.

Cape on the island of Wilhelm in the Hinlopen Strait, Spitsbergen. Coordinates 79° 00'N    20° 00'E.


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