AAAI Publications, Thirtieth AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence

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Topic Models to Infer Socio-Economic Maps
Lingzi Hong, Enrique Frias-Martinez, Vanessa Frias-Martinez

Last modified: 2016-11-02


Socio-economic maps contain important information regarding the population of a country. Computing these maps is critical given that policy makers often times make important decisions based upon such information. However, the compilation of socio-economic maps requires extensive resources and becomes highly expensive. On the other hand, the ubiquitous presence of cell phones, is generating large amounts of spatiotemporal data that can reveal human behavioral traits related to specific socio-economic characteristics. Traditional inference approaches have taken advantage of these datasets to infer regional socio-economic characteristics. In this paper, we propose a novel approach whereby topic models are used to infer socio-economic levels from large-scale spatio-temporal data. Instead of using a pre-determined set of features, we use latent Dirichlet Allocation (LDA) to extract latent recurring patterns of co-occurring behaviors across regions, which are then used in the prediction of socio-economic levels. We show that our approach improves state of the art prediction results by 9%.


topic models; spatio-temporal data;mobility patterns;natural disasters

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