In this post I show how to enrich a ggplot map with data obtained from the Open Street Map (OSM) API. After adding elevation details to the map, I add water bodies and elements identifying human activity. To highlight the areas more densely inhabitated, I propose to use a density-based clustering algorithm of OSM features.
Thursday, 9 August 2018
In Medieval Europe, information was physically concentrated in very few secluded libraries and archives. Powerful institutions managed them and regulated who could access what. The library of the fictional abbey that is described in Umberto Eco’s The Name of the Rose is located in a fortified tower and only the librarian knows how to navigate its mysteries. Monasteries played an essential role in preserving written information and creating new intelligence from that knowledge. But being written information a scarce resource, with the keys to libraries came also authority and power. Similarly, Internet companies are amassing information within their fortified walls. In so doing, they provide services that we now see as essential but they also contravene the two core principles of the Internet: openness and decentralisation.
Monday, 7 May 2018
The abundance of economic data and the scarcity of social data with a comparable level of granularity is a problem for the quantitative analysis of social phenomena. I argue that this fundamental problem has misguided the analysis of the electoral results of the Five Star Movement (M5S) and its interpretation. In this article, I provide statistical evidence suggesting that — in the South — unemployment is not associated with the exceptional increase in the M5S support and that local participation is a stronger predictor of support than most of the demographics.
The 2018 Italian general elections (elections, since both the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate, were renewed) saw
- a significant increase in the number of votes for two parties, the Five Start Movement (M5S) and the League (formerly Northern League),
- an increase in the importance geography as an explanatory dimension for the distribution of votes.
The following two maps show where the M5S and the League have increased electoral support from 2013 to 2018. (Electoral data are always data for the election of the Chamber of Deputies).
The geographic pattern is quite simple. The M5S has increased its support in the South and maintained its votes in the North, the League has significantly strengthened its support in the North but has also collected votes in the South, where it had virtually no support. The third and the fourth most voted parties, the Democratic Party (PD) and Berlusconi’s Forza Italia (FI), have lost votes almost everywhere. If we map the results of the four parties side-by-side with the same scale, the PD and FI almost faded into the background.
Yet, major metropolitan areas do not always follow the national trend. If Naples unambiguously voted M5S, Turin, Milan and Rome did saw the Democratic Party as the most voted party in the wealthiest districts.
The territoriality of the results, especially along the North-South dimension, makes the analysis especially complicated. This because the strong result of the League in the North and of the M5S in the South might simplistically suggest that immigration (which is much stronger in the North) explains the League’s result in the North and unemployment and poverty (stronger in the South) explain the M5S’s result in the South. This reading is especially attractive since immigration and the M5S proposal to introduce a guaranteed minim income have dominated the campaign.
Tuesday, 20 March 2018
This article describes the simulation behind the app that you find here
This simulation of the results for the 2018 general election is based on the results from the last two national elections (the Italian parliament election in 2013 and the European Parliament election 2014) and national polls conducted until 16 February 2018. The simulation is based on one assumption, which is reasonable but not necessarily realistic: the relative territorial strength of parties is stable. From this assumption derives that if the national support for a party (as measured by national voting intention polls) varies, it varies consistently and proportionally everywhere. A rising tide lifts all boats and vice versa. The assumption has some empirical justification. If we compare the difference from the national support (in percentage) for each district in 2013 and 2014 we see a significant correlation, especially in the major parties.
Tuesday, 27 February 2018
The 2016 Italian referendum torpedoed the constitutional reform presented by the government presided by Matteo Renzi (41). According to the final count, which includes 1.2 million votes cast overseas, the reform was rejected by almost 60% of the voters.
Three parties played a predominant role during the electoral campaign: the ruling Democraric Party (PD), leaded by the chief of government Renzi, the Five Star Movement (M5S), founded and leaded by Beppe Grillo (68), and the Lega Nord (LN), leaded by Matteo Salvini (43). The fourth Italian party, Forza Italia, for different reasons – including the health of Silvio Berlusconi (80) – played a minor role.
Monday, 5 December 2016
Leggo e rispondo al post di Massimo Mantellini (Il M5S, il wifi e il principio di precauzione) in cui si evidenzia con preoccupazione come il Movimento abbia portato in Parlamento, dunque in qualche modo legittimandole, posizioni anti-scientifiche; un “pensiero tossico, banale e a suo modo inattaccabile, che nuoce al Paese intero”.
Il Movimento Cinque Stelle con un bacino elettorale che si aggira tra il 25 e il 30% (8.5-10 milioni di persone) è necessariamente complesso in termini di rappresentanza demografica e di diversità di opinione. Considerando un astensionismo del 25%, se vi trovate in fila al supermercato delle 10 persone che vi precedono circa due votano M5S. Purtroppo questa complessità raramente traspare nelle narrazioni giornalistiche, e chi fa informazione tende (troppo) spesso a preferire i tratti caricaturali (da cappello di carta stagnola o da gita in Corea del Nord, per intenderci). Ma questo tipo di informazione è sbagliata: primo perché distorce nella semplificazione, secondo perché incoraggia comportamenti macchiettistici, grotteschi e sbracati da parte di chi sedendo in istituzioni affollate cerca visibilità.
Friday, 22 July 2016
The Five Star Movement (M5S) obtained two major victories in the second round of municipal elections on 19 June 2016 in Rome and Turin. Rome attracted the most international attention but it is M5S’ victory in Turin that is likely the most consequential for them and other European anti-establishment parties.
In Rome, a municipality with 2.8 million people and an annual budget of €5 billon, Virginia Raggi (age 37) gained doubled the votes of her contender Roberto Giachetti (age 55). In Turin, a city with a population of 900,000 and an annual budget of €1.69 billion, Chiara Appendino (age 31) outstripped Piero Fassino (age 66) by about 10 percentage points.
Continue reading on Pop Politics Aus
Friday, 8 July 2016
Explicit semantic analysis (ESA) was proposed by Gabrilovich and Markovitch (2007) to compute a document position in a high-dimensional concept space. At the core, the technique compares the terms of the input document with the terms of documents describing the concepts estimating the relatedness of the document to each concept. In spatial terms if I know the relative distance of the input document from meaningful concepts (e.g. ‘car’, ‘Leonardo da Vinci’, ‘poverty’, ‘electricity’), I can infer the meaning of the document relatively to explicitly defined concepts because of the document’s position in the concept space.
Tuesday, 26 April 2016
To talk about identity and soul of the Five Star Movement (M5S) is not only politically contentious but also practically challenging because of the different axes (at least three) along which the M5S has been developing: the vertical top-down axis from Beppe Grillo to his followers (and sympathising voters), the horizontal axis connecting thousands of militants across the country to local, flexible and loosely organised meetups, and finally the cloudy axis linking Internet users through the different online communicative platforms pertaining to the Movement. The academic literature and the media have been prevalently interested in mapping the provenance of votes. I will try here to show some data also on the position of the M5S derived from its 2013 electoral program and the political background of both the onsite and online activists of the Movement.
But let’s first start briefly introducing the trajectory of a movement that vehemently refuses to be called a party or to be associated with any traditional political identity.
Continue reading on the blog of the WZB.
Tuesday, 12 May 2015
The Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) estimates the greenness of plants covering the surface of the Earth by measuring the light reflected by the vegetation into space. The main idea behind the NDVI is that visible and near-infrared light is absorbed in different proportions by healthy and unhealthy plants: a green plant will reflect 50% of the near infrared-light it receives and only 8% of the visible light while an unhealthy plant will reflect respectively 40% and 30%. NDVI can then be used to quantitatively compare vegetation conditions across time and space (and indeed is quite widely used, a Google Scholar search on NDVI produced 60,500 hits).
Thursday, 14 February 2013
- RT @papa_fire: well played https://t.co/KVZV799qmB
- @arisroussinos @arisroussinos The EU and the IMF lended money to keep Greece life-supporting public services (hospi… https://t.co/cFK7u4l8PO
- @arisroussinos This is factually bullshit. Greece’s problem was unsustainable growth fuelled by unsustainable debt… https://t.co/mUmBmI5IVl
- RT @georgeeaton: A stunning stat: Bitcoin produces as much CO2 a year as a million transatlantic flights (via @alexhern). https://t.co/oVdU…
- @alessabocchi Providers operate as communication exchanges: routing traffic to and from my IDs. They will compete i… https://t.co/uDCa1gjYP7
- @alessabocchi Actually, I agree with you on this. My proposal is for online identities (and their relations to othe… https://t.co/8y2VHforTG
- RT @jeffblankenburg: My daughter started 9th grade yesterday. Her first class of the day was Computer Science. A class of 19 boys and her.…
- @city_affairs @alessabocchi OK, you probably meant the Euro-which is not the same as the EU since you can be a memb… https://t.co/cgJ7g4oBsD
- @city_affairs @alessabocchi Italy joined the European Communities (renamed EU in 1993) in the 1950s as founding mem… https://t.co/N6TL7Mh21e
- Good point. Nationalists can get along pretty well when they are out of government. MEP Salvini and Le Pen were sup… https://t.co/AqFO26zG0e
- Statistics Sunday: Using Text Analysis to Become a Better WriterUsing Text Analysis to Become a Better Writer We all have words we love to use, and that we perhaps use too much. As an example: I have a tendency to use the same transitional statements, to the point that, before I submit a manuscript, I do a find all to see how many times […]
- Clustered Covariances in sandwich 2.5-0Version 2.5-0 of the R package 'sandwich' is available from CRAN now with enhanced object-oriented clustered covariances (for lm, glm, survreg, polr, hurdle, zeroinfl, betareg, ...). The software and corresponding vignette have been improved ...
- Ordered Probit Model and Price Movements of High-Frequency TradesThe analysis of high frequency stock transactions has played an important role in the algorithmic trading and the result can be used to monitor stock movements and to develop trading strategies. In the paper “An Ordered Probit Analysis of Transaction Stock Prices” (1992), Hausman, Lo, and MacKinlay discussed estimating trade-by-trade stock price changes with the […]
- More Practical Data Science with R Book NewsSome more Practical Data Science with R news. Practical Data Science with R is the book we wish we had when we started in data science. Practical Data Science with R, Second Edition is the revision of that book with the packages we wish had been available at that time (in particular vtreat, cdata, and […]
- Mapping the Prevalence of Alzheimer Disease Mortality in the USAIn comparison with other statistical software (e.g., SAS, STATA, and SPSS), R is the best for data visualization. Therefore, in all posts I have written for DataScience+ I take advantage of R and make plots using ggplot2 to visualize all the findings. For example, previously I plotted the percentiles of body mass index in the […]
- The Law and Order of Data ScienceOne conversation I’ve had a few times revolves around the question, “What’s the difference between science and data science?” If I were to come up with a simple distinction, I might say that Science starts with a question; data science starts with the data. What makes data science so difficult is that it starts in […]
- The Trillion Dollar QuestionRecently, Apple’s stock price rose to the point where the company’s market valuation was above $1 trillion, the first U.S. company to reach that benchmark. Subsequently, numerous articles were published describing Apple’s journey to this point and why it got there. Most people describe Apple as a technology company. They make technology products: iPhones, iPads, […]
- Why I Indent My Code 8 SpacesJenny Bryan recently gave a wonderful talk at the Use R! 2018 meeting in Brisbane about “Code Smells and Feels” (I recommend you watch a video of that talk). Her talk covers various ways to detect when your code “smells” and how to fix those smells through refactoring. While there is quite a bit of […]
- The competing narratives of scientific revolutionBack when we were reading Karl Popper’s Logic of Scientific Discovery and Thomas Kuhn’s Structure of Scientific Revolutions, who would’ve thought that we’d be living through a scientific revolution ourselves? Scientific revolutions occur on all scales, but here let’s talk about some of the biggies: 1850-1950: Darwinian revolution in biology, changed how we think about […]
- Let’s get hystericalFollowing up on our discussion of hysteresis in the scientific community, Nick Brown points us to this article from 2014, “Excellence by Nonsense: The Competition for Publications in Modern Science,” by Mathias Binswanger, who writes: To ensure the efficient use of scarce funds, the government forces universities and professors, together with their academic staff, to […]
- The fallacy of the excluded middle — statistical philosophy editionI happened to come across this post from 2012 and noticed a point I’d like to share again. I was discussing an article by David Cox and Deborah Mayo, in which Cox wrote: [Bayesians’] conceptual theories are trying to do two entirely different things. One is trying to extract information from the data, while the […]