Publications -- mobility

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  A model to identify urban traffic congestion hotspots in complex networks

Royal Society Open Science 3, 160098 - 10.1098/rsos.160098 - 2016

Albert Solé-Ribalta, Sergio Gómez, Alex Arenas


The rapid growth of population in urban areas is jeopardizing the mobility and air quality worldwide. One of the most notable problems arising is that of traffic congestion. With the advent of technologies able to sense real-time data about cities, and its public distribution for analysis, we are in place to forecast scenarios valuable for improvement and control. Here, we propose an idealized model, based on the critical phenomena arising in complex networks, that allows to analytically predict congestion hotspots in urban environments. Results on real citiesŐ road networks, considering, in some experiments, real traffic data, show that the proposed model is capable of identifying susceptible junctions that might become hotspots if mobility demand increases.

  Assessing reliable human mobility patterns from higher-order memory in mobile communications

J. Roy. Soc. Inter. 13, 20160203 - DOI: 10.1098/rsif.2016.0203 - 2016

M. De Domenico, J. T. Matamalas, A. Arenas


Understanding how people move within a geographic area, e.g. a city, a country or the whole world, is fundamental in several applications, from predicting the spatio-temporal evolution of an epidemics to inferring migration patterns. Mobile phone records provide an excellent proxy of human mobility, showing that movements exhibit a high level of memory. However, the precise role of memory in widely adopted proxies of mobility, as mobile phone records, is unknown. Here we use 560 millions of call detail records from Senegal to show that standard Markovian approaches, including higher-order ones, fail in capturing real mobility patterns and introduce spurious movements never observed in reality. We introduce an adaptive memory-driven approach to overcome such issues. At variance with Markovian models, it is able to realistically model conditional waiting times, i.e. the probability to stay in a specific area depending on individual's historical movements. Our results demonstrate that in standard mobility models the individuals tend to diffuse faster than what observed in reality, whereas the predictions of the adaptive memory approach significantly agree with observations. We show that, as a consequence, the incidence and the geographic spread of a disease could be inadequately estimated when standard approaches are used, with crucial implications on resources deployment and policy making during an epidemic outbreak.

  Personalized Routing for Multitudes in Smart Cities

EPJ Data Science 4, 1 - - 2015

M. De Domenico, A. Lima, M. Gonzalez, A. Arenas


Human mobility in a city represents a fascinating complex system that combines social interactions, daily constraints and random explorations. New collections of data that capture human mobility not only help us to understand their underlying patterns but also to design intelligent systems. Bringing us the opportunity to reduce traffic and to develop other applications that make cities more adaptable to human needs. In this paper, we propose an adaptive routing strategy which accounts for individual constraints to recommend personalized routes and, at the same time, for constraints imposed by the collectivity as a whole. Using big data sets recently released during the Telecom Italia Big Data Challenge, we show that our algorithm allows us to reduce the overall traffic in a smart city thanks to synergetic effects, with the participation of individuals in the system, playing a crucial role.

  Disease Containment Strategies based on Mobility and Information Dissemination

Scientific Reports 5, 10650 - DOI:10.1038/srep10650 - 2015

A. Lima, M. De Domenico, V. Pejovic, M. Musolesi


Human mobility and social structure are at the basis of disease spreading. Disease containment strategies are usually devised from coarse-grained assumptions about human mobility. Cellular networks data, however, provides finer-grained information, not only about how people move, but also about how they communicate.
In this paper, using cellular network data, we analyze the behavior of a large number of individuals in Ivory Coast. We model mobility and communication between individual by means of an interconnected multiplex structure where each node represents the population in a geographic area (i.e. a \textit{sous-pr\'efecture}, a third-level administrative region). We present a model that describes how diseases circulate around the country as people move between regions. We extend the model with a concurrent process of relevant information spreading. This process corresponds to people disseminating disease prevention information, e.g. hygiene practises, vaccination campaign notices and other, within their social network. Thus, this process interferes with the epidemic. We then evaluate how restricting the mobility or using an adverse information spreading process affects the epidemic. We find that restricting mobility does not delay the occurrence of an endemic state and that an information campaign might be an effective countermeasure.