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Geographies, Volume 2, Issue 3 (September 2022) – 11 articles

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14 pages, 4060 KiB  
Article
The Effect of Twitter App Policy Changes on the Sharing of Spatial Information through Twitter Users
Geographies 2022, 2(3), 549-562; https://doi.org/10.3390/geographies2030033 - 05 Sep 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1880
Abstract
Social media data have been widely used to gain insight into human mobility and activity patterns. Despite their abundance, social media data come with various data biases, such as user selection bias. In addition, a change in the Twitter app functionality may further [...] Read more.
Social media data have been widely used to gain insight into human mobility and activity patterns. Despite their abundance, social media data come with various data biases, such as user selection bias. In addition, a change in the Twitter app functionality may further affect the type of information shared through tweets and hence influence conclusions drawn from the analysis of such data. This study analyzes the effect of three Twitter app policy changes in 2015, 2017, and 2019 on the tweeting behavior of users, using part of London as the study area. The policy changes reviewed relate to a function allowing to attach exact coordinates to tweets by default (2015), the maximum allowable length of tweet posts (2017), and the limitation of sharing exact coordinates to the Twitter photo app (2019). The change in spatial aspects of users’ tweeting behavior caused by changes in user policy and Twitter app functionality, respectively, is quantified through measurement and comparison of six aspects of tweeting behavior between one month before and one month after the respective policy changes, which are: proportion of tweets with exact coordinates, tweet length, the number of placename mentions in tweet text and hashtags per tweet, the proportion of tweets with images among tweets with exact coordinates, and radius of gyration of tweeting locations. The results show, among others, that policy changes in 2015 and 2019 led users to post a smaller proportion of tweets with exact coordinates and that doubling the limit of allowable characters as part of the 2017 policy change increased the number of place names mentioned in tweets. The findings suggest that policy changes lead to a change in user contribution behavior and, in consequence, in the spatial information that can be extracted from tweets. The systematic change in user contribution behavior associated with policy changes should be specifically taken into consideration if jointly analyzing tweets from periods before and after such a policy change. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Technologies in Spatial Data Collection and Analysis)
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21 pages, 7912 KiB  
Article
Identification of Thermal Refuges and Water Temperature Patterns in Salmonid-Bearing Subarctic Rivers of Northern Quebec
Geographies 2022, 2(3), 528-548; https://doi.org/10.3390/geographies2030032 - 02 Sep 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1745
Abstract
In summer, salmonids can experience thermal stress during extreme weather conditions. This may affect their growth and even threaten their survival. Cool water zones in rivers constitute thermal refuges, allowing fish to be more comfortable to grow and survive in extreme events. Therefore, [...] Read more.
In summer, salmonids can experience thermal stress during extreme weather conditions. This may affect their growth and even threaten their survival. Cool water zones in rivers constitute thermal refuges, allowing fish to be more comfortable to grow and survive in extreme events. Therefore, identifying and understanding the spatiotemporal variability of discrete thermal refuges and larger scale cooling zones in rivers is of fundamental interest. This study analyzes thermal refuges as well as cooling zones in two salmonid rivers in a subarctic climate by use of thermal infrared (TIR) imagery. The two studied rivers are the Koroc and Berard Rivers, in Nunavik, Quebec, Canada. On the 17 km studied section of the Berard River, four thermal refuges and five cooling zones were detected, covering 46% of the surveyed section of the river. On the 41 km section studied for the Koroc River, 67 thermal refuges and five cooling zones were identified which represent 32% of the studied section of the river. 89% of identified thermal refuges and about 60% of cooling zones are groundwater-controlled. Continuity of permafrost and shape of the river valley were found to be the main parameters controlling the distribution of refuges and cooling zones. These data provide important insights into planning and conservation measures for the salmonid population of subarctic Nunavik rivers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers of Geographies in 2022)
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12 pages, 2131 KiB  
Article
A Spatial Analysis Approach for Urban Flood Occurrence and Flood Impact Based on Geomorphological, Meteorological, and Hydrological Factors
Geographies 2022, 2(3), 516-527; https://doi.org/10.3390/geographies2030031 - 29 Aug 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1696
Abstract
Urban flooding can cause significant infrastructure and property damage to cities, loss of human life, disruption of human activities, and other problems and negative consequences on people and the local government administration. The objective of this research work is to investigate the relation [...] Read more.
Urban flooding can cause significant infrastructure and property damage to cities, loss of human life, disruption of human activities, and other problems and negative consequences on people and the local government administration. The objective of this research work is to investigate the relation between urban flood occurrence and potentially flood-triggering factors. The analysis is performed in the western part of Athens Basin (Attica, Greece), where over the past decades several flood events caused human losses and damages to properties and infrastructure. Flood impact is measured by the number of citizen calls for help to the emergency line of the fire service, while potentially influencing factors are several geomorphological characteristics of the area and hydrometeorological indices regarding storms, which were determined with the aid of GIS techniques. The analysis is based on the investigation on binary logistic regression and generalized linear regression models that are used to build relationships between the potentially flood-influencing factors and the flood occurrence/impact for three events that were selected for reasons of comparison. The entire analysis highlights the variations attributed to the consideration of different factors, events, as well as to the different cell size of the grid used in the analysis. Results indicate that, the binary logistic regression model performed for flood occurrence achieves higher predictability, compared to the ability of the model used to describe flood impact. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers of Geographies in 2022)
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25 pages, 6831 KiB  
Article
Forest Type Differentiation Using GLAD Phenology Metrics, Land Surface Parameters, and Machine Learning
Geographies 2022, 2(3), 491-515; https://doi.org/10.3390/geographies2030030 - 15 Aug 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2593
Abstract
This study investigates the mapping of forest community types for the entire state of West Virginia, United States, using Global Land Analysis and Discovery (GLAD) Phenology Metrics, Analysis Ready Data (ARD) derived from Landsat time series data, and digital terrain variables derived from [...] Read more.
This study investigates the mapping of forest community types for the entire state of West Virginia, United States, using Global Land Analysis and Discovery (GLAD) Phenology Metrics, Analysis Ready Data (ARD) derived from Landsat time series data, and digital terrain variables derived from a digital terrain model (DTM). Both classifications and probabilistic predictions were made using random forest (RF) machine learning (ML) and training data derived from ground plots provided by the West Virginia Natural Heritage Program (WVNHP). The primary goal of this study was to explore the use of globally consistent ARD for operational forest type mapping over a large spatial extent. Mean overall accuracy calculated from 50 model replicates for differentiating seven forest community types using only variables selected from the 188 GLAD Phenology Metrics used in the study resulted in an overall accuracy (OA) of 54.3% (map-level image classification efficacy (MICE) = 0.433). Accuracy increased to a mean OA of 64.8% (MICE = 0.496) when the Oak/Hickory and Oak/Pine classes were combined into an Oak Dominant class. Once selected terrain variables were added to the model, the mean OA for differentiating the seven forest types increased to 65.3% (MICE = 0.570), while the accuracy for differentiating six classes increased to 76.2% (MICE = 0.660). Our results highlight the benefits of combining spectral data and terrain variables and also the enhancement of the product’s usefulness when probabilistic predictions are provided alongside a hard classification. The GLAD Phenology Metrics did not provide an accuracy comparable to those obtained using harmonic regression coefficients; however, they generally outperformed models trained using only summer or fall seasonal medians and performed comparably to those trained using spring medians. We suggest further exploration of the GLAD Phenology Metrics as input for other spatial predictive mapping and modeling tasks. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Applying Remotely Sensed Imagery in Natural Resource Management)
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15 pages, 4400 KiB  
Article
Scale Influence on Qualitative–Quantitative Geodiversity Assessments for the Geosite Recognition of Western Samoa
Geographies 2022, 2(3), 476-490; https://doi.org/10.3390/geographies2030029 - 10 Aug 2022
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 1618
Abstract
Spatial scale in modeling is one of the most important aspects of any kind of assessment. This study utilized previously studied assessments of geodiversity through a qualitative–quantitative methodology for geosite recognition. Our methodology was developed based on geodiversity as a complex description of [...] Read more.
Spatial scale in modeling is one of the most important aspects of any kind of assessment. This study utilized previously studied assessments of geodiversity through a qualitative–quantitative methodology for geosite recognition. Our methodology was developed based on geodiversity as a complex description of all elements of abiotic nature and processes, influencing it. Based on this definition, geodiversity can be divided into main elements: geology and geomorphology, creating a core of abiotic nature; and additional elements including hydrology, climate, and human influences. We include this description of geodiversity here to emphasize the data which were used in the assessment. The methodology was based on an evaluation system, subject to improvements informed by previous research, and map-based models showing the area of spreading of calculated elements. Except for additional changes in the assessment, this article primarily addresses the problem of scale, by comparing two different methods of scale in the research: grid and non-grid. Grid types of assessment are considered a widely useable method, requiring definitions of areas of research with a potential variety of polygons, and calculating elements inside the cell and applying values to each cell. In contrast, non-grid assessment utilizes the natural borders of all elements (e.g., map view pattern of geological formations), and including them in calculations. The union of layers from different elements creates shapes which highlight regions with the highest values. Hence, the goal of this article is to demonstrate differences between grid and non-grid assessments of geodiversity in Western Samoa. In our results, we compare the methods and emphasize specific tasks most suitable for each method. Full article
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23 pages, 6959 KiB  
Article
Understanding Flood Risk and Vulnerability of a Place: Estimating Prospective Loss and Damage Using the HAZUS Model
Geographies 2022, 2(3), 453-475; https://doi.org/10.3390/geographies2030028 - 29 Jul 2022
Viewed by 2034
Abstract
In the field of flood management, risk and loss estimation is a prerequisite to undertake precautionary measures. Among several available tools, the HAZUS model is one of the most effective ones that can assist in the analysis of different dimensions of natural hazards, [...] Read more.
In the field of flood management, risk and loss estimation is a prerequisite to undertake precautionary measures. Among several available tools, the HAZUS model is one of the most effective ones that can assist in the analysis of different dimensions of natural hazards, such as earthquakes, hurricanes, floods, and tsunamis. The flood hazard analysis portion of the model characterizes the spatial variation of flood regimes for a given study area. This research attempts to illustrate how the geoinformatics tool HAZUS can help in estimating overall risk and potential loss and damage due to floods and how this knowledge can guide the decision-making process and enhance community resilience. Examining a case study in the Rural Municipality of St. Andrews in Manitoba, Canada, this study found that both the ‘Quick Look’ and ‘Enhanced Quick Look’ analyses provided robust results. However, for the RM of St. Andrews, which is characterized by differing levels of exposure on the floodplain, and where many new housing starts occur in high-risk flood zones, ‘Enhanced Quick Look’ with spatially explicit building stock is recommended. The case study of the RM of St. Andrews demonstrates that the HAZUS model can predict loss and damage with increasing magnitude of flooding depth. It is thus recognized that the risk and loss estimation tools can be effective means for future flood loss and damage reduction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers of Geographies in 2022)
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18 pages, 2470 KiB  
Article
Performance Evaluation of Multiple Pan-Sharpening Techniques on NDVI: A Statistical Framework
Geographies 2022, 2(3), 435-452; https://doi.org/10.3390/geographies2030027 - 13 Jul 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1843
Abstract
Pan-sharpening is a pixel-level image fusion process whereby a lower-spatial-resolution multispectral image is merged with a higher-spatial-resolution panchromatic one. One of the drawbacks of this process is that it may introduce spectral or radiometric distortion. The degree to which distortion is introduced is [...] Read more.
Pan-sharpening is a pixel-level image fusion process whereby a lower-spatial-resolution multispectral image is merged with a higher-spatial-resolution panchromatic one. One of the drawbacks of this process is that it may introduce spectral or radiometric distortion. The degree to which distortion is introduced is dependent on the imaging sensor, the pan-sharpening algorithm employed, and the context of the scene analyzed. Studies that evaluate the quality of pan-sharpening algorithms often fail to account for changes in geographic context and are agnostic to any specific applications of an end user. This research proposes an evaluation framework to assess the effects of six widely used pan-sharpening algorithms on normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) calculation in five contextually diverse geographic locations. Output image quality is assessed by comparing the empirical cumulative density function of NDVI values that are calculated by using pre-sharpened and sharpened imagery. The premise is that an effective algorithm will generate a sharpened multispectral image with a cumulative NDVI distribution that is similar to the pre-sharpened image. Research results revealed that, generally, the Gram–Schmidt algorithm introduces a significant degree of spectral distortion regardless of sensor and spatial context. In addition, higher-spatial-resolution imagery is more susceptible to spectral distortions upon pan-sharpening. Furthermore, variability in cumulative density of spectral information in fused images justifies the application of an analytical framework to assist users in selecting the most effective methods for their intended application. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Applying Remotely Sensed Imagery in Natural Resource Management)
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16 pages, 1514 KiB  
Article
Amplification in Time and Dilution in Space: Partitioning Spatiotemporal Processes to Assess the Role of Avian-Host Phylodiversity in Shaping Eastern Equine Encephalitis Virus Distribution
Geographies 2022, 2(3), 419-434; https://doi.org/10.3390/geographies2030026 - 08 Jul 2022
Viewed by 1566
Abstract
Eastern equine encephalitis virus (EEEv) is an arthropod-borne virus and the causative agent of neurologic disease in humans, horses, poultry, and wildlife. Although EEEv is known to be transmitted in cycles involving avian hosts and ornithophilic mosquitoes, there is ongoing debate about the [...] Read more.
Eastern equine encephalitis virus (EEEv) is an arthropod-borne virus and the causative agent of neurologic disease in humans, horses, poultry, and wildlife. Although EEEv is known to be transmitted in cycles involving avian hosts and ornithophilic mosquitoes, there is ongoing debate about the role avian-host phylodiversity plays in diluting or amplifying virus prevalence across geographic space and through time. This study leveraged seventeen years of non-human EEEv detections to quantify possible EEEv dilution and amplification effects in response to avian-host phylodiversity. In assessing EEEv and avian-host diversity relationships, comparisons were performed to illustrate how modeling decisions aimed at capturing spatial patterns, temporal trends, and space–time interactions impacted results and the interpretations drawn from those results. Principal findings indicated that increased avian phylodiversity promotes EEEv dilution across geographic space, but this dilution effect is scale-dependent and masked by amplification effects that occur through time. Findings further demonstrated that the decisions made when modeling complex spatiotemporal dynamics can readily contribute to contrasting statistical outcomes and results misinterpretation, even when arithmetic and mathematics are strictly correct. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers of Geographies in 2022)
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22 pages, 4660 KiB  
Article
Toward Sustainable Urban Drainage Planning? Geospatial Assessment of Urban Vegetation Density under Socioeconomic Factors for Quito, Ecuador
Geographies 2022, 2(3), 397-418; https://doi.org/10.3390/geographies2030025 - 07 Jul 2022
Viewed by 1983
Abstract
Natural or anthropogenic urban vegetation is an important resource for urban planning, risk assessment, and sustainable development of a city. Quito is a megadiverse city due to its location and topography, but the socioeconomic diversity generates more contrasting conditions of certain behaviors and [...] Read more.
Natural or anthropogenic urban vegetation is an important resource for urban planning, risk assessment, and sustainable development of a city. Quito is a megadiverse city due to its location and topography, but the socioeconomic diversity generates more contrasting conditions of certain behaviors and habits related to urban infrastructure. The contrasts of vegetation and green spaces in the different sectors of Quito also reflect the diversity of the city. This study examines the effects of socioeconomic conditions on the loss or increase of urban vegetation. The exploratory regression method (spatial) and logit model (non-spatial) were used to explain the socioeconomic effects on urban vegetation density at the level of urban parishes. On the one hand, the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) was calculated as the dependent variable based on the 2021 sentinel images. On the other hand, the independent variables were structured based on the socioeconomic level, the land valuation areas of Quito (AIVAS), and the quality of life index. This article contributes to establishing baseline information that helps structure the conditions, strategies, and investments to design and implement plans and programs for urban drainage, ecosystem benefits, and sustainable development in the city of Quito. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue A GIS Spatial Analysis Model for Land Use Change (Volume II))
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18 pages, 1381 KiB  
Article
Studying the Utilization of a Map-Based Visualization with Vitality Datasets by Domain Experts
Geographies 2022, 2(3), 379-396; https://doi.org/10.3390/geographies2030024 - 30 Jun 2022
Viewed by 4253
Abstract
With the rapid growth of information technology and geographic information science, many map-based visualization applications for decision-making have been proposed. These applications are used in various contexts. Our study provides empirical evidence of how domain experts utilize map-based data visualization for generating insights [...] Read more.
With the rapid growth of information technology and geographic information science, many map-based visualization applications for decision-making have been proposed. These applications are used in various contexts. Our study provides empirical evidence of how domain experts utilize map-based data visualization for generating insights into vitality with respect to health-related concepts. We conducted a study to understand domain experts’ knowledge, approach, and experience. Nine domain experts participated in the study, with three experts each from the fields of government, business, and research. The study followed a mixed-methods approach involving an online survey, open-ended tasks, and semi-structured interviews. For this purpose, a map-based data visualization application containing various vitality-related datasets was developed for the open-ended tasks. Our study confirms the importance of maps in this domain but also shows that vitality is strongly geographical. Furthermore, we found that map-based visualizations require multiple data sources and dimensions to enhance the utilization of them in the context of vitality. Therefore, our study suggests the necessity of a combination of multiple datasets as ‘vitality themes’ to efficiently communicate this particular subject to experts. As such, our results provide guidelines for designing map-based data visualizations that support the decision-making process across various domain experts in the field of vitality. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geovisualization: Current Trends, Challenges, and Applications)
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25 pages, 8109 KiB  
Article
Assessing the Morphological Quality of the Calore River (Southern Italy)
Geographies 2022, 2(3), 354-378; https://doi.org/10.3390/geographies2030023 - 24 Jun 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1423
Abstract
As highlighted by the EU Water Framework Directive from 2000, the hydromorphology of a stream, besides water quality and biological aspects, is one of the main elements to be evaluated to correctly assess its ecological state. Notwithstanding this, there are no such studies [...] Read more.
As highlighted by the EU Water Framework Directive from 2000, the hydromorphology of a stream, besides water quality and biological aspects, is one of the main elements to be evaluated to correctly assess its ecological state. Notwithstanding this, there are no such studies in peninsular Southern Italy. This study provides a contribution to filling this gap by assessing the morphological quality of one of the major rivers of this area, i.e., the Calore River, by using the IDRAIM method. The latter presents the advantage of taking into account the specific Italian context in terms of channel adjustments and human pressures, together with pre-existing geomorphological approaches developed in other countries. The method is based on data obtained by means of GIS analysis, remote sensing, and field survey. The analysis provided encouraging results, highlighting the good morphological quality of the Calore River. To maintain such quality, accurate monitoring of the human activities and/or careful planning of structures that could negatively affect the river’s morphological quality is unquestionably needed. The Calore River morphological quality seems to be controlled by artificiality rather than by the channel changes experienced since the 1950s. The results will be fundamental for already planned studies dealing with flood hazard and risk assessment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers of Geographies in 2022)
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