In the aftermath of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, a large increase in the activity of tsunami hazard and risk mapping is observed. Most of these are site-specific studies with detailed modelling of the run-up locally. However, fewer studies exist on the regional and global scale. Therefore, tsunamis have been omitted in previous global studies comparing different natural hazards. Here, we present a first global tsunami hazard and population exposure study. A key topic is the development of a simple and robust method for obtaining reasonable estimates of the maximum water level during tsunami inundation. This method is mainly based on plane wave linear hydrostatic transect simulations, and validation against results from a standard run-up model is given. The global hazard study is scenario based, focusing on tsunamis caused by megathrust earthquakes only, as the largest events will often contribute more to the risk than the smaller events. Tsunamis caused by non-seismic sources are omitted. Hazard maps are implemented by conducting a number of tsunami scenario simulations supplemented with findings from literature. The maps are further used to quantify the number of people exposed to tsunamis using the Landscan population data set. Because of the large geographical extents, quantifying the tsunami hazard assessment is focusing on overall trends.