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Automating the administration boundary design process using hierarchical spatial reasoning theory and geographical information systems

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Abstract:

This paper addresses the problems associated with the integration of data between incongruent boundary systems. Currently, the majority of spatial boundaries are designed in an uncoordinated manner with individual organizations generating individual boundaries to meet individual needs. As a result, current technologies for analysing geospatial information, such as geographical information systems (GISs), are not reaching their full potential. In response to the problem of uncoordinated boundaries, the authors present an algorithm for the hierarchical structuring of administrative boundaries. This algorithm applies hierarchical spatial reasoning (HSR) theory to the automated structuring of polygons. In turn, these structured boundary systems facilitate accurate data integration and analysis whilst meeting the spatial requirements of selected agencies. The algorithm is presented in two parts. The first part outlines previous research undertaken by the authors into the delineation of administrative boundaries in metropolitan regions. The second part outlines the distinctly different constraints required for administrative-boundary design in rural areas. The development of the algorithm has taken place in a GIS environment utilizing Avenue, an object-orientated programming language that operates under ArcView, the desktop software developed and distributed by ESRI.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/713811748

Affiliations: 1: Department of Geomatics, The University of Melbourne, VIC 3010, Australia 2: Department of Geospatial Science, RMIT University, Australia 3: Department of Geomatics, The University of Melbourne, Australia; e-mail: ianpw@unimelb.edu.au

Publication date: March 1, 2003

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