The “Surname Map,” which allows you to look up the nationwide distribution of all surnames in Japan

It is thought that there are more than 100,000 different surnames in Japan alone, representing family trees and family names. It is also known that there are regional differences in the distribution of surnames, and a “surname map” is available to easily find out how a particular surname is distributed. Very interesting.

Surname Map (

When you access the URL above, you will see a message saying “About this site (in Japanese)”. The “Surname Map(名字マップ)” is a map of about 40 million names in telephone directories and residential maps, compiled and mapped for each prefecture, and can display not only absolute numbers but also specialization coefficients that show relative concentration. It was created by a team from Ritsumeikan University, with the cooperation of Acton, a company that manages customer databases and provides data products.

How to

Simply type the surname to the input area as highlight and click “Search (検査)”. Then, be patience, the UI/UX is not well built. It Shows nothing but actually query the data on the backend for about 20-40 seconds.

As the example above, my Surname “耿(Keng)” is actually exists in Japan, 35 people in total. Very interesting.


Showing data in Map is not a new thing to do, but visualized information is always a good way to catch people’s eyes. I think my next step its to learn visualized data/information to front-end, especially “map”.

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