Geoconvert creating that spatial relationship david rawnsley mimas university of manchester
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GeoConvert: Creating that Spatial Relationship David Rawnsley Mimas, University of Manchester. Overview. GeoConvert is an online geography matching and conversion tool for UK academics.

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GeoConvert: Creating that Spatial Relationship David Rawnsley Mimas, University of Manchester

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Geoconvert creating that spatial relationship david rawnsley mimas university of manchester

GeoConvert: Creating that Spatial RelationshipDavid RawnsleyMimas, University of Manchester


Overview

Overview

  • GeoConvert is an online geography matching and conversion tool for UK academics.

  • GeoConvert allows registered users to obtain and manipulate complex geographical and postcode data in a straightforward way.

  • A solution to a specific UK problem but it can be applied to any country.


The problem

The Problem

  • Many types of geography in the UK

    • Administrative

    • Electoral

    • Postal

    • Health

    • European

    • Census

    • Statistical


A little uk geography

A Little UK Geography

Strategic Health Authorities - 2006

Parliamentary Constituencies 2005

Counties, Districts, Unitary Authorities - 1998


Further complication

Further Complication

UK

Wales

Scotland

England

Northern Ireland

Unitary Authority

GOR

Council Area

District Councils

UA

County

ST Electoral Division

ST Postcode Sector

District

CAS Postcode Sector

LLSOA

Ward

CAS Electoral Division

Intermediate Zones

ST Ward

MSOA

Data Zones

LSOA

CAS Ward

English and Welsh

Output Areas

Scottish

Output Areas

Northern Irish

Output Areas


A partial solution

A Partial Solution

  • The NSPD

    • Produced by the Office for National Statistics

    • A long list of UK Postcodes

    • Also has other geographical zones

    • Postcode metadata

    • New version every quarter


Problems with the nspd

Problems With The NSPD

  • It’s huge – 1.37 Gb at last count

  • It’s cumbersome – flat file with many rows or basic Access database

  • Horrible variable names – ‘OSHLTHAU’

  • It keeps changing

  • Very little support from ONS

  • Why can’t someone tame it?


  • Our hero at last

    Our Hero At Last

    • What is it?

      • Online web based access to NSPD

      • Range of functions

      • Provides a framework for integrating data

      • Regularly updated

      • Help and support provided

        • FAQs

        • Original documentation

        • Glossary

        • User Guides


    Geoconvert

    GeoConvert


    What does it actually do

    What Does It Actually Do?

    • 3 functions

      • Postcode related information

      • Geography matching

      • Geographical data conversion


    Why should i use it

    Why Should I Use It?

    • Prizes!

    • It enables datasets to be linked much more easily

    • It enables researchers to link their own data to many more datasets

    • It enables data to be linked historically

    • It allows users to quickly and easily get access to widely used deprivation and classification data


    How does it do it

    How Does It Do It?

    • Postcode information direct from NSPD

    • Use postcodes as a population proxy

    • Dissection and re-aggregation of filtered postcodes between zones to achieve measure of proportional distribution of population

    • Lots of complicated database stuff

    • Lots of complicated interface stuff

    • UK specific but the solution can be applied to any country


    Isn t some of that a bit dodgy

    Isn’t Some Of That A Bit Dodgy?

    • Dependent on accuracy of ‘how much?’ and ‘where?’

    • Boundary fuzziness due to unique allocation of postcodes

    • Ideal data is population related with homogenous distribution

      • male, female = good

      • clusters of cancer patients = bad

    • Based on current population

      • current to historical works best

    • Partial input = partial output


    What might it do next

    What Might It Do Next?

    • A better population proxy?

    • Different population proxies

    • More metadata

    • Confidence measures

    • Standards based XML output

    • Integration with external data sources

    • Machine to machine

    • Pipetastic

    • http://geoconvert.mimas.ac.uk


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