Delineation and Classification of Urban Neighborhoods of Accra, Ghana, from Quickbird Imagery: Manual vs. Semi-automated Approaches

  • Christopher D. Lippitt
  • Douglas A. Stow
  • Sory Toure
  • Milo Vejraska
Part of the GeoJournal Library book series (GEJL, volume 110)


Neighborhood is a term that, though part of the common vernacular, has varied and sometimes-conflicting definitions (Sampson et al. 2002; Talen 1999). Neighborhoods are commonly understood to be defined spatial units within a city, but as is discussed in other chapters within this volume, neighborhoods are social constructs for which definitions in physical space vary among inhabitants and observers. The research relating to neighborhoods described in this book was conducted with two related objectives: (1) understanding the social interaction and transfer of knowledge relating to health outcomes within neighborhoods and (2) delineation of spatial units for which health, socio-economic, and environmental data can be summarized to support statistical analyses. The research described in this chapter relates to the second of these two objectives and, therefore, considers a ‘neighborhood’ to be a definable spatial unit that may or may not contain residents who share a common identity or behaviors. Specifically, it seeks to test the feasibility of defining spatial units (i.e., neighborhoods) of relatively homogeneous health outcomes and, as a proxy, socio-economic conditions from satellite image data. This objective was achieved by assessing (1) methods for the delineation of neighborhoods from satellite image data and (2) the relationship between satellite remote sensing derived land surface properties and factors affecting health outcomes.


Local Knowledge Spatial Unit Informal Settlement Neighborhood Boundary Physical Landscape 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This research was funded in part by grant number R01 HD054906 from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development or the National Institutes of Health.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht. 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christopher D. Lippitt
    • 1
  • Douglas A. Stow
    • 2
  • Sory Toure
    • 2
  • Milo Vejraska
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Geography and Environmental StudiesUniversity of New MexicoAlbuquerqueUSA
  2. 2.Department of GeographySan Diego State UniversitySan DiegoUSA

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