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An Open-Source Model for Projecting Small Area Demographic and Land-Use Change

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Alistair FordORCiD, Dr James Virgo



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


The size, composition, and spatial distribution of both people and households have a substantial impact on the demand for and development and delivery of infrastructure required to support the population. Infrastructure encompasses a wide range of domains including energy, transport, and water, each of which has its own set of spatial catchments at differing scales. Demographic projections are required to assess potential future demand; however, official projections are usually not provided at a high level of spatial resolution required for infrastructure planning. Furthermore, generating bespoke demographic projections, often incorporating a range of scenarios of possible future demographic change is a specialist, resource intensive job and as such is often missing from infrastructure development projects. In this paper we make the case that such demographic projections should be at the heart of infrastructure planning and present a set of open-source models which can be used to undertake this demographic projection work, thus providing the tools needed to fill the identified gap. We make use of a case study for the United Kingdom to exemplify how a range of scenarios can be assessed using our model.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Lomax N, Smith AP, Archer L, Ford A, Virgo J

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Geographical Analysis

Year: 2022

Pages: Epub ahead of print

Online publication date: 07/02/2022

Acceptance date: 24/01/2022

Date deposited: 07/04/2022

ISSN (print): 0016-7363

ISSN (electronic): 1538-4632

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.


DOI: 10.1111/gean.12320


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