Modelling impacts of high-speed rail on urban interaction with social media in China’s mainland

Junfang Gong, Shengwen Li, Xinyue Ye, Qiong Peng, Sonali Kudva

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


High-Speed Rail (HSR) has increasingly become an important mode of inter-city transportation between large cities. Inter-city interaction facilitated by HSR tends to play a more prominent role in promoting urban and regional economic integration and development. Quantifying the impact of HSR’s interaction on cities and people is therefore crucial for long-term urban and regional development planning and policy making. We develop an evaluation framework using toponym information from social media as a proxy to estimate the dynamics of such impact. This paper adopts two types of spatial information: toponyms from social media posts, and the geographical location information embedded in social media posts. The framework highlights the asymmetric nature of social interaction among cities, and proposes a series of metrics to quantify such impact from multiple perspectives–including interaction strength, spatial decay, and channel effect. The results show that HSRs not only greatly expand the uneven distribution of inter-city connections, but also significantly reshape the interactions that occur along HSR routes through the channel effect.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)638-653
Number of pages16
JournalGeo-Spatial Information Science
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2021
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Computers in Earth Sciences


  • China
  • High-Speed Rail
  • asymmetric spatial relatedness
  • channel effect
  • social media


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