These guys were brought to my attention by a colleague at a national UN-association. There was a Norwegian editor that prepared a very popular book in the late eighties: Target Earth, on sustainable development in the world. Loads of maps and graphics. And cartograms. The book starts off covering more "ordinary" issues like water and health, but then moves on to talk about the "lost" souls and tries to come to a conclusion in the quality of life (measured by the HDI index) in relation to religion: the poorest countries in the world are non-christian etc. Japan gave the editor some problem here, since they were at the top at that time... (the editor added a comment about the Japanese alcohol consumption, three times higher than the next country in the ranking below, to show how barbaric they were...)
Apparently there will be a new edition, or follow-up, to that book soonish. Probably with a huge circulation (more fundamentalist congregations) and big money in the production.
I did some research on the web and found the company that was behind the production of that book: Global Mapping International. Apprently they do quite some GIS analysis to see where to direct the missionary and prayer efforts and to map out where the lost souls are located.
Absolutely fascinating. (in a weird way) I found the terminology a bit odd, and that is not what I am used to - and I bump into much more moderate development related work done by churches in my job (and also through family)
Much more at the GMI Mapping resources page and their WorldVue page.
Note that I am very non-religious, and I hope that no-one is offended!
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