Journal Article Editorial introduction: Special Issue on “Urban Simulation and Modeling”

Yan, Liu  ,  Anrong, Dang

Since the turn of this century, cities are homes to more than half of the world's population even though they cover only three per cent of the Earth's land surface. Cities are often the fast-growing innovation and socio economic hub of a region; however, they also face the challenge of finding new space to accommodate the increasing number of urban habitants. While there has been a long tradition of urban modelling in geography and transportation research to understand urban growth dynamics and identify new growth directions, with its roots in both social physics and urban and regional economics, considerable globally efforts are being expended in developing models to understand how cities grow and evolve. However, urban modelling is still challenged by a diversity of methods, metrics, indicators and data (OECD 2011). After all, cities are places where people come together to interact with one another and therefore our understanding on the evolution of cities must be enriched by studies of networks, interactions, connections and transactions (Batty 2013). Thus, this special issue focuses on modelling the various aspects of urban dynamics ranging from urban evacuation modelling, agent-based simulation for on-line meetings to the modelling of truck driving and residents' outdoor recreation behaviours, all of which contributes to enhance our understanding on the interaction of urban individuals which shape the form and outcome of our cities.

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