Events and Meetings of Italian Statistical Society, Statistics and Demography: the Legacy of Corrado Gini

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Migrants settlement patterns in the city of Catania
Angelo Mazza, Antonio Punzo

Last modified: 2015-09-04


Social scientists are often interested in characterizing the forces underlying the settlementprocess of a population within a region of space. Frequently, the only information readilyavailable are on the spatial distribution of individuals in the region, so researchers often tryto obtain indications on the nature of the settlement process from the observation of spatialpatterns.Such indications are often based on measures of deviation of the observed pattern fromcomplete spatial random-ness (CSR). Nevertheless, in this context, CSR is of little interestbecause of the background geographical variation in the the study area and, typically, re-searchers are most concerned in clustering above and beyond that due to the urban fabricof the city. Why clustering occurs? Is it because individuals need to stay close togetherto interact or, conversely, because they concentrate in certain portions of space to exploitmore favorable conditions? In this paper we apply a parametric approach to the analysis ofspatial heterogeneity, based on the inhomogeneous K-function (Baddeley et al., 2000). Anapplication comparing the settlement patterns of different groups of foreign families withinthe urban area of Catania (Italy) is presented. We consider the urban space to be nonhomogenous, we estimate the pattern of inhomogeneity and we use it to separate clusteringdue to spatial heterogeneity from spatial dependence.

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