The COVID-19 pandemic has led to many deaths and economic disruptions across the world. Several studies have examined the effect of corresponding health risk factors in different places, but the problem of spatial heterogeneity has not been adequately addressed. The purpose of this paper was to explore how selected health risk factors are related to the pandemic infection rate within different study extents and to reveal the spatial varying characteristics of certain health risk factors. An eigenvector spatial filtering-based spatially varying coefficient model (ESF-SVC) was developed to find out how the influence of selected health risk factors varies across space and time. The ESF-SVC was able to take good control of over-fitting problems compared with ordinary least square (OLS), eigenvector spatial filtering (ESF) and geographically weighted regression (GWR) models, with a higher adjusted R2 and lower cross validation RMSE. The impact of health risk factors varied as the study extent changed: In Hubei province, only population density and wind speed showed significant spatially constant impact; while in mainland China, other factors including migration score, building density, temperature and altitude showed significant spatially varying impact. The influence of migration score was less contributive and less significant in cities around Wuhan than cities further away, while altitude showed a stronger contribution to the decrease of infection rates in high altitude cities. The temperature showed mixed correlation as time passed, with positive and negative coefficients at 2.42 °C and 8.17 °C, respectively. This study could provide a feasible path to improve the model fit by considering the problem of spatial autocorrelation and heterogeneity that exists in COVID-19 modeling. The yielding ESF-SVC coefficients could also provide an intuitive method for discovering the different impacts of influencing factors across space in large study areas. It is hoped that these findings improve public and governmental awareness of potential health risks and therefore influence epidemic control strategies.
In the big data era, spatial positioning based on location description is the foundation to the intelligent transformation of location-based-services. To solve the problem of vagueness in location description in different contexts, this paper proposes a positioning method based on supervaluation semantics. Firstly, through combing the laws of human spatial cognition, the types of elements that people pay attention to in location description are clarified. On this basis, the source of vagueness in the location description and its embodiment in the expression form of each element are analyzed from multiple levels. Secondly, the positioning model is constructed from the following three aspects: spatial object, distance relation and direction relation. The contexts of multiple location description are super-valued, respectively, while the threshold of observations is obtained from the context semantics. Thus, the precisification of location description is realized for positioning. Thirdly, a question-answering system is designed to the collect contexts of location description, and a case study on the method is conducted. The case can verify the transformation of a set of users’ viewpoints on spatial cognition into the real-world spatial scope, to realize the representation of vague location description in the geographic information system. The result shows that the method proposed in the paper breaks through the traditional vagueness modeling, which only focuses on spatial relationship, and enhances the interpretability of semantics of vague location description. Moreover, supervaluation semantics can obtain the precisification results of vague location description in different situations, and the positioning localities are more suitable to individual subjective cognition.
Maritime ports are critical logistics hubs that play an important role when preventing the transmission of COVID-19-imported infections from incoming international-going ships. This study introduces a data-driven method to dynamically model infection risks of international ports from imported COVID-19 cases. The approach is based on global Automatic Identification System (AIS) data and a spatio-temporal clustering algorithm that both automatically identifies ports and countries approached by ships and correlates them with country COVID-19 statistics and stopover dates. The infection risk of an individual ship is firstly modeled by considering the current number of COVID-19 cases of the approached countries, increase rate of the new cases, and ship capacity. The infection risk of a maritime port is mainly calculated as the aggregation of the risks of all of the ships stopovering at a specific date. This method is applied to track the risk of the imported COVID-19 of the main cruise ports worldwide. The results show that the proposed method dynamically estimates the risk level of the overseas imported COVID-19 of cruise ports and has the potential to provide valuable support to improve prevention measures and reduce the risk of imported COVID-19 cases in seaports.
The internal structure of buildings is becoming increasingly complex. Providing a scientific and reasonable evacuation route for trapped persons in a complex indoor environment is important for reducing casualties and property losses. In emergency and disaster relief environments, indoor path planning has great uncertainty and higher safety requirements. Q-learning is a value-based reinforcement learning algorithm that can complete path planning tasks through autonomous learning without establishing mathematical models and environmental maps. Therefore, we propose an indoor emergency path planning method based on the Q-learning optimization algorithm. First, a grid environment model is established. The discount rate of the exploration factor is used to optimize the Q-learning algorithm, and the exploration factor in the ε-greedy strategy is dynamically adjusted before selecting random actions to accelerate the convergence of the Q-learning algorithm in a large-scale grid environment. An indoor emergency path planning experiment based on the Q-learning optimization algorithm was carried out using simulated data and real indoor environment data. The proposed Q-learning optimization algorithm basically converges after 500 iterative learning rounds, which is nearly 2000 rounds higher than the convergence rate of the Q-learning algorithm. The SASRA algorithm has no obvious convergence trend in 5000 iterations of learning. The results show that the proposed Q-learning optimization algorithm is superior to the SARSA algorithm and the classic Q-learning algorithm in terms of solving time and convergence speed when planning the shortest path in a grid environment. The convergence speed of the proposed Q- learning optimization algorithm is approximately five times faster than that of the classic Q- learning algorithm. The proposed Q-learning optimization algorithm in the grid environment can successfully plan the shortest path to avoid obstacle areas in a short time.
Vehicle collisions with animals pose serious issues in countries with well-developed highway networks. Both expanding wildlife populations and the development of urbanised areas reduce the potential contact distance between wildlife species and vehicles. Many recent studies have been conducted to better understand the factors that influence wildlife–vehicle collisions (WVCs) and provide mitigation methods. Most of these studies examined road density, traffic volume, seasonal fluctuations, etc. However, in analysing the distribution of WVC, few studies have considered a spatial and significant distance geostatistical analysis approach that includes how different land-use categories are associated with the distance to WVCs. Our study investigated the spatial distribution of agricultural land, meadows and pastures, forests, built-up areas, rivers, lakes, and ponds, to highlight the most dangerous sections of roadways where WVCs occur. We examined six potential ‘hot spot’ distances (5–10–25–50–100–200 m) to evaluate the role different landscape elements play in the occurrence of WVC. The near analysis tool showed that a distance of 10–25 m to different landscape elements provided the most sensitive results. Hot spots associated with agricultural land, forests, as well as meadows and pastures, peaked on roadways in close proximity (10 m), while hot spots associated with built-up areas, rivers, lakes, and ponds peaked on roadways farther (200 m) from these land-use types. We found that the order of habitat importance in WVC hot spots was agricultural land < forests < meadows and pastures < built-up areas < rivers < lakes and ponds. This methodological approach includes general hot-spot analysis as well as differentiated distance analysis which helps to better reveal the influence of landscape structure on WVCs.
Over the last decade, the emergence and significant growth of home-sharing platforms, such as Airbnb, has coincided with rising housing unaffordability in many global cities. It is in this context that we look to empirically assess the impact of Airbnb on housing prices in Sydney—one of the least affordable cities in the world. Employing a hedonic property valuation model, our results indicate that Airbnb’s overall effect is positive. A 1% increase in Airbnb density is associated with approximately a 2% increase in property sales price. However, recognizing that Airbnb’s effect is geographically uneven and given the fragmented nature of Sydney’s housing market, we also employ a GWR to account for the spatial variation in Airbnb activity. The findings confirm that Airbnb’s influence on housing prices is varied across the city. Sydney’s northern beaches and parts of western Sydney experience a statistically significant value uplift attributable to Airbnb activity. However, traditional tourist locations focused around Sydney’s CBD and the eastern suburbs experience insignificant or negative property price impacts. The results highlight the need for policymakers to consider local Airbnb and housing market contexts when deciding the appropriate level and design of Airbnb regulation.
The present study provides information about the evolution of the Sperchios River deltaic area over the last 6500 years. Coastal changes, due to natural phenomena and anthropogenic activities, were analyzed utilizing a variety of geospatial data such as historic records, topographic maps, aerial photos, and satellite images, covering a period from 4500 BC to 2020. A qualitative approach for the period, from 4500 BC to 1852, and a quantitative analysis, from 1852 to the present day, were employed. Considering their scale and overall quality, the data were processed and georeferenced in detail based on the very high-resolution orthophoto datasets of the area. Then, the multitemporal shorelines were delineated in a geographical information system platform. Two different methods were utilized for the estimation of the shoreline changes and trends, namely the coastal change area method and the cross-section analysis, by implementing the digital shoreline analysis system with two statistical approaches, the end point rate and the linear regression rate. Significant river flow and coastline changes were observed with the overall increase in the delta area throughout the study period reaching 135 km2 (mean annual growth of 0.02 km2/yr) and the higher accretion rates to be detected during the periods 1805–1852, 1908–1945 and 1960–1986, especially at the central and north part of the gulf. During the last three decades, the coastline has remained relatively stable with a decreasing tendency, which, along with the expected sea-level rise due to climate change, can infer significant threats for the coastal zone in the near future.
This paper proposes a method for quantitative evaluation of perception deviations due to generalization in choropleth maps. The method proposed is based on comparison of class values assigned to different aggregation units chosen for representing the same dataset. It is illustrated by the results of application of the method to population density maps of Lithuania. Three spatial aggregation levels were chosen for comparison: the 1 × 1 km statistical grid, elderships (NUTS3), and municipalities (NUTS2). Differences in density class values between the reference grid map and the other two maps were calculated. It is demonstrated that a perceptual fallacy on the municipality level population map of Lithuania leads to a misinterpretation of data that makes such maps frankly useless. The eldership level map is, moreover, also largely misleading, especially in sparsely populated areas. The method proposed is easy to use and transferable to any other field where spatially aggregated data are mapped. It can be used for visual analysis of the degree to which a generalized choropleth map is liable to mislead the user in particular areas.
As a new product of the Internet and big data era, migration data are of great significance for the revealing of the complex dynamic network patterns of urban agglomerations and for studying the relations between cities by using the “space of flows” model. Based on Baidu migration data of one week in 2021, this paper constructs a 30 × 30 rational data matrix for cities in Zhongyuan Urban Agglomeration and depicts the network pattern from static and dynamic perspectives by using social network analysis and dynamic network visualization. The results show that the network of Zhongyuan Urban Agglomeration is characterized by a circular structure with Zhengzhou as the center, a city belt around Zhengzhou as the connection, subcentral cities as the support and peripheral cities as the extension. Zhengzhou is the core city of the entire network, related to which the central and backbone networks divided in this paper account for nearly 40% of the total migration. Shangqiu, Luoyang, Zhoukou and Handan also play an important role in the structure of the migration network as subcentral cities. For a single city, the migration scale generally peaks on weekends and reaches its minimum during Tuesday to Thursday. Regarding the relations between cities, the migration variation can be divided into four types: peaking on Monday, peaking on weekends, bimodal and stable, and there are obvious phenomena of weekly commuting. In general, the links between cities outside Henan Province and other cities in the urban agglomeration are relatively weak, and the constraints of administrative regionalization on intercity migration are presumed to still exist. According to the results, the location advantage for multi-layer development and construction of Zhongyuan Urban Agglomeration should be made use of. In addition, the status as the core city and the radiation range should be strengthened, and the connections between the peripheral cities and the other cities should be improved, so as to promote the integrated and efficient development of the whole urban agglomeration.
The layout of public service facilities and their accessibility are important factors affecting spatial justice. Previous studies have verified the positive influence of public facilities accessibility on house prices; however, the spatial scale of the impact of various public facilities accessibility on house prices is not yet clear. This study takes transportation analysis zone of Wuhan city as the spatial unit, measure the public facilities accessibility of schools, hospitals, green space, and public transit stations with four kinds of accessibility models such as the nearest distance, real time travel cost, kernel density, and two step floating catchment area (2SFCA), and explores the multiscale effect of public services accessibility on house prices with multiscale geographically weighted regression model. The results show that the differentiated scale effect not only exists among different public facility accessibilities, but also exists in different accessibility models of the same sort of facility. The article also suggests that different facilities should adopt its appropriate accessibility model. This study provides insights into spatial heterogeneity of urban public service facilities accessibility, which will benefit decision making in equal accessibility planning and policy formulation for the layout of urban service facilities.