A few months ago I produced some thematic maps of Bosnia (paper) using
maptools and other packages in R, but I didn’t include scales or a north arrow. It sounds simple and
sp has functions for doing those things, but I couldn’t get it to work well with my maps. Here is a basic map of Bosnia’s pre-war municipalities:
In 1991 a census was conducted in Bosnia and Herzegovina, which then was still part of the disintegrating federal state of Yugoslavia. Bosnia was the most diverse republic in the former Yugoslavia, with significant populations of Bosnian Muslims (or Bosniaks, 43 percent), Serbs (31 percent), Croats (17 percent), and others. Bosniaks, Serbs, and Croats were more or less well-established identities with historical roots. Unlike in most multiethnic countries however, the census respondents also had the option to identify themselves as Yugoslavs, rather than a particular ethnic or national group. It turns out that this played an interesting role in the way violence occurred in the Bosnian War from 1992 to 1995.
At the beginning of the Yugoslav civil wars, Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) consisted of 109 municipalities. Finding free geographic layers with those municipal boundaries was difficult so I recreated them from National Geophysical Data Center Coastline Extractor, using World Data Bank II. Municipality names and demographic information come from the 1991 Yugoslav census courtesy wikipedia. This zipped folder contains both the ArcMap shapefiles as well as a copy of the working paper that describes in further detail how the boundary shapefiles were created, data sources, etc.