Impacts of Spatial Apartheid

Although apartheid was legally abolished in South Africa in 1991, its legacy remains today: the World Bank labels South Africa the world's most unequal country. To help researchers understand the current impact of spatial apartheid, we developed a dataset consisting of satellite imagery covering South Africa, accompanied by polygons labeled according to four classes of neighborhoods: wealthy areas, non wealthy areas, non residential neighborhoods and vacant land.

Read our NeurIPS Paper

Our paper detailing our methodology to construct the dataset was published at the NeurIPS 2021 Datasets and Benchmarks Track.

Read the paper here

Read the Datasheet

Read the datasheet for a detailed overview of the dataset, what it was created for, how we intend for it to be used, and what its limitations are.

Read the datasheet on GitHub

Read the MIT Tech Review article on our work

Our spatial apartheid work was featured on MIT Tech Review: How satellite images and AI could help fight spatial apartheid in South Africa.

Read on MIT Tech Review

South Africa: 30 years after apartheid, what has changed?

Raesetje was interviewed by Al Jazeera in this in-depth look at the ways South African government's data practices obscure the true quality of life of township residents.

Read the full article on Al Jazeera

Visualizing the Dataset

We have created a map where you can visualize the dataset below, with options to notify us if you believe that a neighborhood was incorrectly labeled.