Significant route discovery: A summary of results

Dev Oliver, Shashi Shekhar, Xun Zhou, Emre Eftelioglu, Michael R. Evans, Qiaodi Zhuang, James M. Kang, Renee Laubscher, Christopher Farah

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Given a spatial network and a collection of activities (e.g., pedestrian fatality reports, crime reports), Significant Route Discovery (SRD) finds all shortest paths in the spatial network where the concentration of activities is unusually high (i.e., statistically significant). SRD is important for societal applications in transportation safety, public safety, or public health such as finding routes with significant concentrations of accidents, crimes, or diseases. SRD is challenging because 1) there are a potentially large number of candidate routes (~ 1016) in a given dataset with millions of activities or road network nodes and 2) significance testing does not obey the monotonicity property. Previous work focused on finding circular areas of concentration, limiting its usefulness for finding significant linear routes on a network. SaTScan may miss many significant routes since a large fraction of the area bounded by circles for activities on a path will be empty. This paper proposes a novel algorithm for discovering statistically significant routes. To improve performance, the proposed algorithm features algorithmic refinements that prune unlikely paths and speeds up Monte Carlo simulation. We present a case study comparing the proposed statistically significant networkbased analysis (i.e., shortest paths) to a statistically significant geometry-based analysis (e.g., circles) on pedestrian fatality data. Experimental results on real data show that the proposed algorithm, with our algorithmic refinements, yields substantial computational savings without reducing result quality.

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© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014.


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