Spotlight On: Alistair Leak
5 March 2018
Alistair worked as a Research Associate at CASA investigating potential applications of new forms of urban data.
Role and Project:
Having completed a Master’s degree with CASA in 2012, I returned to the department in 2017 as a Research Associate on the ‘Inclusive and Healthy Mobility’ project. In collaboration with Transport for West Midlands and the Consumer Data Research Centre, the project seeks to better understand an observed decline in travel through the analysis of new forms of urban data; in particular, in the case of concessionary travellers.
How would you summarise your personal research?
With a background in GIS and quantitative geography, my interests are in the applications of new forms of data such as are collected by social media providers and by industry and government. In this project, the focus is on data collected by transport providers which offer a unique and under-exploited means of observing human dynamics across transport networks. A fundamental component of this is determining the optimum means by which such insight may be generated, and second, the degree to which such insight are representative of wider population. In the case of the West Midlands project, a key achievement has been the development of a data linkage framework between Automated Fare data, Vehicle Location data and Service Timetables providing a means by which activity across the network may be reconstructed and analysed. Moving forwards, the project goal is to develop tools to enable non-expert users to gain insight into travel demand, network performance and passenger behaviour. Such tools may enable transport providers to better cater to the population and lead to measurable improvements in overall service provision.
What do you most like about CASA?
The multidisciplinary nature of CASA means you are surrounded by constant inspiration.
Where can people find out more about your work?
To see the full list of our CASA Spotlight On features, click here.