On Wednesday, April 10, PhD Candidate Nastaran Pourebrahim from UNC Greensboro will present, "Social Media Analysis for Urban and Transportation Planning"
Twitter is one of the most popular social media platforms that changed the way people create, disseminate, and share information. Twitter use has been growing rapidly, but the effectiveness of this system for urban and transportation planning is an on-going debate. Hence, it is important to understand its potential as a means of communication during different events and a source of volunteered geographic information for transportation studies. Three different case studies are presented here to address this challenge. The first two studies investigate the usage of Twitter during natural disasters and explore communication dynamics and quality of information shared on Twitter during such events. The third study develops and evaluates the performance of multiple trip distribution models while combining both traditional and Twitter data. The results show that Twitter is a highly valuable source of information during disasters and can provide an effective vehicle for emergency managers towards establishing better bi-directional communication during disasters.