20 of the largest cities in the world by population, ranked

20 of the largest cities in the world by population, ranked
  • Demographia measured the world's largest cities by population according to urban area.

  • Urban areas are linked by commuting flows and social and economic interactions.

  • The urban area of Tokyo, Japan, is the world's largest city with a population of 37,732,000.

There are several ways to measure the population of the world's largest cities.

Demographia, an urban public policy and demographic analysis site, ranked the largest cities in the world by measuring the populations in urban areas as opposed to official city limits or metropolitan statistical areas.

As defined by Alex Blei, a program scholar at New York University's Stern Marron Institute Urban Expansion Project cited in Demographia's report, urban areas are contiguous, built-up areas that "function as an integrated economic unit, linked together by commuting flows, social and economic interactions."

Here are the top 20 largest cities in the world, with populations measured by urban area in 2022.

20. Lagos, Nigeria

Lagos, Nigeria
Lagos, Nigeria.Tayvay/Shutterstock

Population: 16,637,000

19. Buenos Aires, Argentina

Buenos Aires Argentina
Buenos Aires, Argentina.Milosz Maslanka/Shutterstock

Population: 16,710,000

18. Moscow, Russia

Moscow, Russia.
Moscow, Russia.Poca Wander/Getty Images

Population: 17,332,000

17. Shenzhen, China

shenzen china
Shenzhen, China.Lam Yik Fei/Getty Images

Population: 17,619,000

16. Bangkok, Thailand

bangkok thailand
Bangkok, Thailand.Getty Images

Population: 18,007,000

15. Kolkata, India

An aerial view of Kolkata, India.
Kolkata, India.Soltan Frédéric/Getty Images

Population: 18,502,000

14. Beijing, China

beijing china
Beijing, China.LU JINRONG/Shutterstock

Population: 18,522,000

13. Dhaka, Bangladesh

Dhaka, Bangladesh
Dhaka, Bangladesh.Meinzahn/Getty Images

Population: 18,627,000

12. Cairo, Egypt

cairo egypt
Cairo, Egypt.Getty Images

Population: 20,296,000

11. New York, USA

A view on lower Manhattan skyline and One World Trade Center in New York, United States, on October 25, 2022.
New York, USA.Beata Zawrzel/Getty Images

Population: 21,509,000

10. Mexico City, Mexico

Mexico City
Mexico City, Mexico.Shutterstock

Population: 21,804,000

9. Seoul, South Korea

Seoul, South Korea
Seoul, South Korea.Cj Nattanai/Shutterstock

Population: 23,016,000

8. Sao Paulo, Brazil

Sao Paulo
Sao Paulo, Brazil.anacotrin/shutterstock

Population: 23,086,000

7. Shanghai, China

shanghai china
Shanghai, China.Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

Population: 24,073,000

6. Manila, Philippines

Makati skyline at dusk, Manila, Philippines - stock photo
Manila, Philippines.Getty Images

Population: 24,922,000

5. Mumbai, India

Mumbai City, India.
Mumbai, India.Getty Images

Population: 24,973,000

4. Guangzhou, China

guangzhou china
Guangzhou, China.Shutterstock/4045

Population: 26,940,000

3. Delhi, India

Dehli, India.
Delhi, India.hadynyah/Getty Images

Population: 32,226,000

2. Jakarta, Indonesia

Jakarta, Indonesia.
Jakarta, Indonesia.Getty Images

Population: 33,756,000

1. Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan.
Tokyo, Japan.visualspace/Getty Images

Population: 37,732,000

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