Comparing the fractality of European urban neighbourhoods: do national contexts matter?
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- Thomas, I., Frankhauser, P. & Badariotti, D. J Geogr Syst (2012) 14: 189. doi:10.1007/s10109-010-0142-4
The objective of this paper is to show that morphological similarities between built-up urban surfaces are greater across borders than within cities in Europe: living, architectural and planning trends are international. The spatial arrangement of built-up areas is analysed here by means of fractal indices using a set of 97 town sections selected from 18 European urban agglomerations. The fractal dimension is estimated by correlation techniques. Results confirm that morphological similarities are higher across countries/cities than within. Moreover, two types of fractal laws are considered: one uses the basic fractal scaling law; the other introduces a prefactor a that is often called a “form factor” in the fractal literature. Differences in the results obtained by both laws are explained empirically as well as theoretically, and suggestions are made for further measurements.