Geographia Technica, Vol 13, Issue no. 1/2018, pp. 1-9


József BENEDEK, Kinga IVAN

DOI: 10.21163/GT_2018.131.01

ABSTRACT: The aim of this paper is to identify the relationship between the spatial and temporal variation of spatial disparities (measured with Gross Domestic Product, GDP) and night-time lights at regional (county) level in Romania. The analysis presumed using night-time lights data captured by the DMSP-OLS satellites, in addition to official statistical data expressing economic income (GDP). The DMSP-OLS night-time lights data collected by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has a spatial resolution of 30 arc second and is available for the period of 1992-2013. The delimitation of unlit and lit areas was performed using ArcGIS software. The lower value of light intensity reflects less developed areas and those with higher value reflects more developed areas. The assessment relationship between GDP and night lights value was made using statistical correlation. The results show a strong linear correlation between the GDP and night lights value. It means that night-time lights are an excellent proxy for measuring spatial (regional) disparities. Moreover, based on the linear dependence and the spatial relation between these two datasets, we will be able in the future to go one step further and measure the level of spatial disparities at local level (cities and communes), where official statistical data is not recorded.

Keywords: Night-time light, Spatial disparities, DMSP-OLS satellite images, Romania.

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