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Manchester Urban Institute

Sotirios Thanos presenting at the AREUEA International Conference in Amsterdam

26 May 2017

The American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association (AREUEA) International Conference is being in Amsterdam from 3-5 of July 2017 and Sotirios Thanos is presenting two papers:

Thanos, S., Kamargianni, M., Schäfer, A.W. , (2017) 'Car travel demand: spillovers and asymmetric price effects in a spatial setting.'


A novel analysis framework for the spatial aspects of car travel, measured by vehicle miles travelled (VMT), is introduced in this paper. The specification of a dynamic Spatial Durbin Model (SDM) enables the analysis of VMT spatial spillovers and diffusion between neighboring areas in the short and long-run. The framework is further developed to capture and introduce to a spatial setting potential asymmetry and hysteresis that can reflect reference dependence and habits. A panel dataset is compiled at sub-regional level, based on official car mileage recordings in England and Wales. In addition to the inelastic long-run responses of VMT to fuel price (-0.124) and income (0.116) changes, the results illustrate asymmetries and hysteresis in price elasticities with a significant spatial component. The impact magnitude on VMT from a number of factors, such as alternative fuel use, fuel deserts in rural areas, road network and car fleet characteristics, is also estimated. The results are consistent with the car use saturation hypothesis through the positive impact of motorization rate to VMT. The negative effect of public transport infrastructure on car travel is only significant in the spatial models. The paper demonstrates the applicability and importance of spatial econometrics in transport research.

Dubé, J., Legros, D., Thanos, S., (2017) 'Temporal Dimension in Real Estate Modelling:  Determining the Best Fit when Decomposing the Spatial Connections.'


Recent developments in spatial econometrics offer a way to explicitly account for spatial effects in Hedonic pricing (HP) models. However, real estate transactions occur over space and at a specific (moment in) time, which requires modifications in the construction of the “typical” symmetric weight matrix to decompose the spatial effect into two distinct components: i) a multidirectional spatial “peer” relation; and ii) a unidirectional spatial connections from past sale prices. These connections are captured through the specification of spatio-temporal weight matrices. This paper analyses the role of time in the price determination process, by selecting the best fitting specification for spatio-temporal models. Based on an empirical application using residential transactions in Aberdeen, Scotland, the results show that the information of past comparable sales exhibits temporal friction (decay), providing no improvement to the overall model fit beyond the elapse of 6 months.  The inverse temporal transformation is also shown to work best in capturing temporal friction (or decay). 

For more details on the conference, please visit the website:

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