How to Use The Extractive Industries Map

The Extractive Industries Map of Ghana is a web-based, publicly-accessible, interactive mapping application that is focused on the extractive industries of oil, gas and mining. Using this website, policy makers, citizens and government officials can explore the relationships between extractive activities, revenues and socioeconomic conditions by creating and sharing their own maps or even downloading the underlying data. This page provides an introduction to the mapping interface and instructions on how to use the many features of this application.

Click here to download a PDF version of this how-to guide.

Click here to go to the map page.


  • Overview of the interface
  • Getting started: How to use the interface
  • Getting more data about a point or shape
  • What information was mapped
  • Sharing your maps
  • Downloading data
  • More information


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    Navigating to your area of interest: zoom and pan

    You can move around the map by clicking and holding the cursor and dragging the map until you are centered on your area of interest. You can zoom in and out in two ways. You can use the mouse wheel or scrolling portion of a trackpad, or you can use the tools in the upper left of the map window. On the zoom bar, you can click the “+” button to zoom in, the “-“ button to zoom out, or you can grab the white bar and slide it up or down.

    Displaying the legend

    The color or size of items on the map often corresponds to a particular piece of information. The legend tells you the numbers to which those colors and sizes correspond. You can open the legend by clicking on the bar labeled ‘Legend’ in the lower right of the map window. If you can’t see all the items in the legend at once, you can use the slider bar on the bottom of the legend window to see all the layers.

    Turning layers on and off

    Depending on what data you are working with, there are several different ways to choose what to display. The table below shows you how to work with each group of data, and the next section shows you how to change the way you display the items you’ve chosen.

    Mineral and oil data: Use the second row of buttons on the bar above the map window to select which mineral deposits, oil deposits, mines and/or oil wells you want to display on the map. The buttons for mineral deposits (a rock) and mines (a mining pick) have a letter that corresponds to the mineral type in the lower right corner: G=Gold, B=Bauxite, M=Manganese, O=Other.

    Indicator data: Use the dropdown menu labeled “BASEMAP” on the top left of the bar above the map window to select which indicator data to show on the map, such as malnutrition rates or population density. You can only select one indicator at a time.

    Donor-funded projects: Use the top row of buttons on the bar above the map window to select which types of World Bank projects (if any) you would like to show. Right now, IFC projects are always turned on, but in the future they will be controlled in the same way as the World Bank projects.

    Selecting how the data is displayed

    You can choose different ways to display the point data about mines and oil wells. You can just show the location of the mines/well, or you can use a piece of information about them (such as government revenues or production) to show circles that change in size according to the quantity of interest.

    Use the dropdown menu labeled “EXTRACTIVES” below the indicator menu to change how your selected mine and/or oil well data is displayed. You can choose to place a circle over each mine or well, where the size of the circle is determined by your choice of production levels, company payments, government receipts or total employment. If you want, you can also use this menu to just show the location of the mine/well. Note that you can only see total oil sale amounts at the moment, and not the true government revenue from those sales.

    Using this same menu, you can also switch to displaying the reported district revenues (just for mines at the moment), which places a circle at the center of each mining-affected district, with the size showing the total revenue the district reported receiving between 2004 and 2008. Note that turning on district points will turn off mine locations.

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    Most of the features in the map have a lot more information stored than what is shown. To look at this data, simply click on the feature your interested in, such as a district or a mine. The window that pops up has different groups of information under each tab, such as “Production”, “Revenue” and “Environment” for mines. Where possible, links to additional information and other websites are provided.

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    The following datasets were compiled for this mapping, and additional information about these data can be found at

    Mining information

    • Industrial mine locations
    • Mineral production (2007-2009)
    • Gold, bauxite, manganese and other deposits
    • Number of employees (2010)
    • Mining company information (name, website, social accountability reports, etc)

    Oil and gas information

    • Commercial oil well location
    • Oil production
    • Exploration and exploitation lease locations and company interests
    • Links to petroleum agreements
    • Oil company information (name, website)

    Financial data

    • Mining company payments and reported government receipts of royalties, taxes and fees (2004-2008)
    • District mining revenues received from central government (2004-2008)
    • Oil sale amounts

    Socioeconomic indicators

    • Regional unemployment rates
    • Regional malnutrition rates
    • Regional infant mortality rates
    • Regional maternal health indicators
    • District population density
    • Regional wealth distributions

    Activities of international aid organizations

    • World Bank-funded activities, including location, amount committed, sector, and links to project information
    • International Finance Corporation-funded activities in oil, gas and mining, including location, amount committed and links to project information

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    Right now, you can share your maps in several ways. You can embed the map you created into another webpage, such as a blog, and it will automatically include information about the location and what data you have chosen to display. Another way you can share your map is to post it to Facebook or Twitter. Simply click on the Share dropdown menu and select how you want to share your map.

    In the future there will also be options to download an image of the map or to print it directly from the website. In the mean time, you can take a screenshot of the map and copying it into Microsoft Word or Powerpoint. To do this, go to your map, and press “Alt+Print Screen”, then go to Microsoft Word or Powerpoint and press “Ctrl+V”. You can now save or print your map.

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    Most of the data shown in the map can be downloaded directly from the website. Data is available either as an ESRI shapefile or as a comma-separated value (CSV) file. Shapefiles contain spatial information, and can be directly added to GIS programs such as ArcGIS or to online mapping platforms such as CSV files can be easily opened in Excel, and include a set of latitude and longitude points for each data point. This way, you can look at the data in a table using Excel, or you can upload the CSV file to another mapping platform, such as Google Earth or GeoCommons and use the latitude and longitude fields to tell the program where to put the points. This way, you can share this data with others and put it into most any platform you want.

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    If you want to learn more about where the data came from, how it was collected or what was done to process and prepare it for the map, much of this information can be found at the About page for the Mapping the Extractive Industries project.

    In addition, we are hoping to receive feedback about what would make this application more useful and relevant, so please feel free to contact us at with questions or suggestions.

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