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Can We Use Anonymised Tracking Data to Learn About Local Communities?

Can We Use Anonymised Tracking Data to Learn About Local Communities? Article Image

8. May 2024

Dr Somayeh Dodge, an Associate Professor of Spatial Data Science at the University of California Santa Barbara, recently visited our DSI community Mobility. Dr Somayeh Dodge is working as a Fellow of the DSI Community Mobility from March to August 2024. Last week, she shared fascinating findings from her research, which delves into movement patterns in human and ecological systems.


Mobility Based Diversity Study:

In 2019, Dr Somayeh Dodge and her MOVE Lab analyzed the population diversity in Los Angeles County beyond residential diversity. The found that individuals of the same ethnicity tend to visit similar places. The diversity of places varies throughout the day, with the most diverse moments occurring during lunchtime. Interestingly, Latino places exhibit the lowest diversity.


Changing Movement Patterns During Disasters:

Dr Dodge also explored how people move during crises, such as natural disasters. She showed us how in 2018 the fire in Santa Barbara County had an impact on the road network and the mobility patterns of commuters. Most individuals followed the shortest path, but deviations occurred due to imbalances (e.g., avoiding fire-affected areas).


Research Focus: Dr Dodge’s work spans geographic data analytics, knowledge discovery, modeling, and visualization. She investigates movement processes influenced by individual behavior, social interactions, and environmental factors. Her interdisciplinary research covers domains like movement ecology and human mobility.