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In recent years, cellular automata (CA) have gained popularity as modelling tools for urban process simulation. This may be due to the fact that CA are systems able to reproduce and mimic complex systems with self- organizing properties. Despite that, some questions remain to be addressed when CA are used as modelling tools in urban studies. How to get in use all the modelling potential of CA in order to make it suitable for urban processes is a question still to be addressed.

Cities have been defined as complex systems considering their intrinsic properties and the process of land use dynamics, and therefore CA are particularly well suited for modelling urban simulations. However, cities have different characteristics due to several causes, such as the level of economic development, social and cultural issues, historical aspects, geographical location. etc. This paper addresses an experiment for modelling urban land use scenarios in Prague using an urban cellular automaton. The aim of this paper is to test the capability of an urban CA in simulating urban scenarios. We calibrated the model using historical and reference land use datasets for a thirty years period between 1968 and 1998. The aim of this model prototype is to predict future land use development under existing spatial plans and policies, and to compare alternative planning and policy scenarios in terms of their effects on future land use development.

Additional information

Authors: BARREDO J I ET AL, European Commission, Joint Research Centre, Institute for Environment and Sustainability, Ispra (IT)
Bibliographic Reference: An oral paper given at: Spatial information and social processes: European and Greek experience in G.I.S. - European Seminar Organised by: Hellenic Geographic Information Society (HELLASGI) Held at: Thessaloniki, 27-28 June 2002
Availability: Papers from the seminar will be available on the HELLASGI website ( ), which at present is available only in Greek.
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