Quantifying face-to-face interaction patterns in urban space with social media check-in records

Authors: Yao Shen*, Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis, University College London
Topics: Spatial Analysis & Modeling, Urban Geography, China
Keywords: Face-to-face encounter, spatial configuration, urban structure, social media check-ins, space syntax
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/11/2018
Start / End Time: 5:20 PM / 7:00 PM
Room: Bayside A, Sheraton, 4th Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


Public space facilitates the social interactions between people. However, the quantification of the interplay between spaces, urban movement, and face-to-face encounter is still an unresolved conundrum in the digital society. Using ubiquitous anonymised social media check-in records in Central Shanghai, China, this study proposes pipelines for quantifying physical face-to-face co-presence patterns between local and non-local residents sensed by social media over time from space to space, in which social differences, cognitive cost and time remoteness are integrated as the physical co-presence intensity index to illustrate the spatiotemporally different ways by which the built environment bounds various groups of space users configurationally via urban space. It is found that the variation of face-to-face interaction patterns captures the idea of urban flows. The detected modes of face-to-face patterns represent the social patterns of street hierarchy, illustrating how space delivers physical meeting opportunities and shapes the spatial rhythms from the public to the private. The shifting encounter potentials thought streets are recognised to be an illustration of the spatiotemporally varying complex interaction between urban form and function, which can be descript by lognormal distributions. The delivered method adds temporal dimensions to urban morphology studies and the space syntax research, in particular, suggesting a new way to adopt urban design as an instrument to address temporal, social issues.

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