Functional signatures in Great Britain: A dataset

Krasen Samardzhiev*, Martin Fleischmann, Daniel Arribas-Bel, Alessia Calafiore, Francisco Rowe

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

The spatial distribution of activities and agents within cities, conceptualised as an urban function, profoundly affects how different areas are perceived and lived. This dataset introduces the concept of functional signatures - contiguous areas of a similar urban function delineated based on enclosed tessellation cells (ETC) - and applies it to the area of Great Britain. ETCs are granular spatial units, which capture function based on interpolations from open data inputs stretching from remote sensing to land use, census and points of interest data. The spatial extent of each signature type is defined by grouping ETCs using cluster analysis, based on similarity between their functional profiles, inferred by the data linked to each cell. This approach results in a dataset that reflects urban function as a composite of aspects, rather than a singular use, and is built up from granular spatial units. Furthermore, the underlying data are sourced from available open data products, which together with a method and code fully available, yields a fully reproducible pipeline and makes our dataset and open data product. Both the final classification composed of 17 types of functional signatures and the underlying data collected on the level of enclosed tessellation cells are included in the release and described in this report.

Original languageEnglish
Article number108335
Pages (from-to)1-22
Number of pages22
JournalData in brief
Early online date29 May 2022
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2022

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • functional areas
  • geographic data science
  • land use
  • spatial data
  • urban analytics


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