Calibration of stochastic cellular automata: the application to rural-urban land conversions
Despite the recognition of cellular automata (CA) as a flexible and powerful tool for urban growth simulation, the calibration of CA had been largely heuristic until recent efforts to incorporate multi-criteria evaluation and artificial neural network into rule definition. This study developed a stochastic CA model, which derives its initial probability of simulation from observed sequential land use data. Furthermore, this initial probability is updated dynamically through local rules based on the strength of neighbourhood development. Consequentially the integration of global (static) and local (dynamic) factors produces more realistic simulation results. The procedure of calibrated CA can be applied in other contexts with minimum modification. In this study we applied the procedure to simulate rural-urban land conversions in the city of Guangzhou, China. Moreover, the study suggests the need to examine the result of CA through spatial, tabular and structural validation.
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