Visual aids

Ph Elections President 20040729Map

The map on the left is from Wikipedia and shows the general results of the election. The map on the right is from, and appeared in the Inquirer’s front page today. Green marks provinces with governors supporting the President; Red are provinces for the President’s resignation; yellow marks provinces that are neutral. Both maps are surprisingly similar. The full roster of governors and where they stand is here.

Manuel L. Quezon III.

13 thoughts on “Visual aids

  1. Many people are saying that the Philippine political system is a carbon copy of the American system. If this is so, then the Philippines is a federation of states.
    If our electoral system is also the same as that of America, we should elect through electoral college. If that is the case, one can speculate looking at the map that the results of many presidential elections would have been different.

  2. Hi Manolo,

    Forgive me, I’m a bit slow today, could you please explain how the two maps are “surprisingly similar”. For example, I see on the left that most Luzon provinces and the entire Palawan as being in the Poe camp, while on the right much of this same area are green, meaning governor’s supporting Arroyo, as you say (I can’t read the legend on the maps, fonts are too small).The red marks, provinces for Arroyo’s resignation, are very few.
    Thank you.

  3. Manuel,

    Very interesting and enlightening post, especially for a foreigner (honorary Filipino by marriage) who wants to learn more about the country.

    Apparently the work was done for the Inquirer by an outfit called PDI Research which I am going to research a bit further. One generic term for themed maps such as this is GIS (Geographic Information Systems), a subject of great interest to me over the years. One need only contrast the dull as dishwater tabular lists of governors and their affiliation with the immediate grasp provided by the maps to see the educational benefits.

    So far the understanding I’ve gained of Philippine politics is that it’s a difficult subject even for an educated Filipino, for the masa and ignorant foreigners nearly a closed book. Tools like this really help, thanks.

    One minor critique, however, these are not visual aides but visual aids … an “aide” being a person, often one who happens to provide “aid”.

    Best regards

  4. Dave, I’m a great believer in maps. One of my long-term projects is a historical atlas for the Philippines, because it would be much more enlightening then mahy textbooks. But we need mapmakers and the research….

    Alex: Take the pro-resignation and neutral areas, and they’re the hard and soft anti-admininstration areas; the green are the hard and soft pro administration areas, they’re similar in that there isn’t any surprising anti-admin area, though a few surprising pro-admin areas.

  5. Manolo,

    I don’t know if you have explored it, but GIS as mentioned by Dave might be a key technological solution to your project. I am quite familiar because we have it in the city government, although underutilized. You might also be interested to know that leading Philippine cities like Cebu (which pioneered it among LGUs), Gen San, Cagayan de Oro, Antipolo and Dagupan have all invested on GIS to enhance their real property tax collection capabilities.

    Secondly, I will also be interested to see how a map of congressional districts would compare with the provincial governments. For one, it is congressman who usually serve as the countervailing force to the incumbent governors at the local level. Especially in provinces where a number of political families are vying for power, the maps above might not be able to capture the dynamics of local politics.

    BTW, Joe Perez was already allowed to post bail, and got out of jal last Wednesday. Thanks for including my blog and his case in your recent posting.:)

  6. Hi Dave, this is JV Rufino at, the online news subsidiary of the Philippine Daily Inquirer. PDI Research is short for Philippine Daily Inquirer Research. It’s the research group of the paper.

  7. Manolo, if you overlay the areas where the CPP-NPA has grown tremendously and where the MILF remains in control, what would the image look like?

  8. Somewhat off topic:
    Check out this site, which features a map of the world stitched together from satellites pictures.

    It’s a great way of viewing the Philippines. Zooming in, the cities and towns show up to individual roads. As well, the topographical features, mountains and rivers show up beautifully. The level of detail is just amazing.

  9. To JVR, thanks for the info. We’ll see is we can touch base next visit, appreciate the forward thinking at INQ7.

    For James: You might also like to check out Google Earth.

    Although it’s a download and more bandwidth intensive than it has substantially more features and flexibility, world-wide.

    Sadly, neither of these two services provide any real “maps” of the Philippines. The provide what GIS folks call ‘overhead coverage’, satellite and/or aircraft photogtaphy. Useful in it’s own way but what’s needed for the kind of work currently being done, and the intersting projects Manuel has mentioned are the underlying maps. has some basic map coverage, at least basic highways and most significant towns are shown, but alas on Google, walang.

    Best regards

  10. Hi,
    Looking at the map, IMHO there’s nothing new with the governor of Iloilo who is the only anti-GMA in western visayas. Whether his stand is for the good or not, still I have doubts. The guy has been switching parties ever since the days of Marcoses and could not even fix the 50km highway in his district (5th).
    These days it’s hard to believe who is telling the truth, I hope people should discern what is political or not. Thanks for PDI and you for the guidance.
    Rodel Bellosillo
    Riyadh KSA

  11. Basing from the map above. Poe has the key provinces which holds large number of population. but of course, this does not mean he got all the votes in these provinces. So with mrs arroyo. So, we should elave this dispute to a credible judge for election. Is there any??

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