Urban growth and decay

6 February 2014
Hannah Fry
Much of the mathematical modelling of urban systems revolves around the use spatial interaction models, derived from information theory and entropy-maximisation techniques and embedded in dynamic difference equations. When framed in the context of a retail system, the dynamics of centre growth poses an interesting mathematical problem, with bifurcations and phase changes, which may be analysed analytically. In this contribution, we present some analysis of the continuous retail model and corresponding discrete version, which yields insights into the effect of space on the system, and an understanding of why certain retail centers are more successful than others. This class of models turns out to have wide reaching applications: from trade and migration flows to the spread of riots and the prediction of archeological sites of interest, examples of which we explore in more detail during the talk.
  • Industrial and Applied Mathematics Seminar