The impact of scale on spatial connections: an exploratory analysis
Keywords: Big geo-data, Mass media, Location-based social media (LBSM), Distance decay
Abstract. Quantifying the intensity of spatial connections has been a crucial topic in many research fields, such as urban transportation, migration, and trade. Researchers have proposed various models, such as the gravity model and the radiation model, to quantify the magnitude of spatial connections. Traditionally, modeling the connections (relatedness) between spatial entities is limited to the physical space, but with the rapid growth of information technologies, the scope of spatial connections extends to the virtual space. However, one topic that has not been fully studied is how spatial scale may impact spatial connections in the virtual space and how this influence can be reflected in spatial decay models. In this study, we used two types of datasets (mass media and social media data) to explore the impact of scale on fitting the distance decay coefficient. The results confirmed that spatial scale can impact the magnitude of spatial decay effects in datasets with different characteristics.