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Cities, cells, and complexity: developing a research agenda for urban geocomputation

University College London, United Kingdom

Key words: Cellular Automata, Urban Systems, Geocomputation, Urban Simulation

Cellular automata are widely employed in urban geocomputation and have been applied to urban systems simulation with a recent fervour. Despite the popularity of these models, however, researchers have been slow to heed the doubts and disclaimers expressed in the early days of their application to urban phenomena. This is, in part, a response to advances in the field. However, many of these concerns remain as appropriate today as they did in the 1980s, and have not been addressed largely because the study of cellular urban modelling, and the broader field of urban geocomputation, lacks a defined research agenda. This paper addresses an apparent imbalance in the field and re-evaluates the research agenda of urban geocomputation, in particular cellular-based modelling of urban systems, pre-emptively suggesting future avenues for exploration and considering the challenges that might lie ahead.