Navigation Links
Stanford scientists use Flickr photos to assess value of natural tourist attractions

Scientists affiliated with the Natural Capital Project at Stanford University have found a way to use photo-sharing site Flickr to measure where and when people are using natural areas for recreation and tourism. This information can help measure the benefits and value that these areas provide to society.

Tourism is big industry, contributing $6 billion a year to the world economy, and it's expected to grow to $10 billion over the next 10 years. While a great deal is known about how man-made tourist destinations, such as Disneyland, contribute to local economies, it has been hard to figure out the contribution of natural areas such as parks and beaches.

Tapping into the big data collected by social media sites, researchers at the Natural Capital Project utilized information from 1.4 million geo-tagged images in Flickr, and the user profiles associated with them, to see where people were going and where they were coming from. Comparing this information to data from on-site surveys at 836 recreational sites around the world, they found that the information from Flickr can serve as a reliable indicator of how many people visit a tourist attraction each year and when they are visiting. Their research was published Oct. 17 in Scientific Reports.

This is the first study to ground truth the use of social media data to predict these visitation rates.

The research shows how "information from crowd-sourced social media is revolutionizing the way we study people and understand their choices," said lead author Spencer Wood.

"No one has been able to crack the problem of figuring out visitation rates and values for tourism and recreation without on-site studies until now," said Anne Guerry, lead scientist at the Natural Capital Project. Until now, researchers had to rely on local surveys and head counts to get this type of visitation information. Using social media to get ideas of where people are visiting, and where they are coming from, is faster, less expensive and better for looking at changes over time and space.

This new approach provides the chance to clarify what attracts people to natural areas, and to determine if changes in ecosystems lead to changes in visitation rates. It also holds the promise of better natural area management because land-use planners, park managers and government officials can use the information on visitation rates to better manage their lands for the people who use them.


Contact: Bjorn Carey, Stanford
Stanford University

Related biology news :

1. Technical Program Announced for TSensors (Trillion Sensor) Summit at Stanford University for October 22-25, 2013
2. Stanford researchers say peak oil concerns should ease
3. Recovery of Hawaiian green sea turtles still short of historic levels, Stanford-led study suggests
4. Stanford engineers monitor heart health using paper-thin flexible skin
5. Stanford researchers map out an alternative energy future for New York
6. Stanfords Markus Covert wins Paul Allen Distinguished Investigator Award
7. Stanford scientists calculate the carbon footprint of grid-scale battery technologies
8. Stanford scientists help shed light on key component of Chinas pollution problem
9. UC Berkeley, UCSF and Stanford join forces to help commercialize university innovations
10. Stanford researchers develop tool for reading the minds of mice
11. Going negative: Stanford scientists explore new technologies that remove atmospheric CO2
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Stanford scientists use Flickr photos to assess value of natural tourist attractions
(Date:6/3/2016)... , June 3, 2016 ... von Nepal hat ... Lieferung hochsicherer geprägter Kennzeichen, einschließlich Personalisierung, Registrierung ... in der Produktion und Implementierung von Identitätsmanagementlösungen. ... Ausschreibung im Januar teilgenommen, aber Decatur wurde ...
(Date:6/2/2016)...   The Weather Company , an IBM Business (NYSE: ... capability in which consumers will be able to interact with ... via voice or text and receive relevant information about the ... Marketers have long sought an advertising solution that can create ... relevant and valuable; and can scale across millions of interactions ...
(Date:6/1/2016)... -- Favorable Government Initiatives Coupled With Implementation ... to Boost Global Biometrics System Market Through 2021  ... " Global Biometrics Market By Type, By End ... - 2021", the global biometrics market is projected to ... growing security concerns across various end use sectors such ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)... 27, 2016  Liquid Biotech USA ... of a Sponsored Research Agreement with The University ... (CTCs) from cancer patients.  The funding will be ... correlate with clinical outcomes in cancer patients undergoing ... then be employed to support the design of ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... Researchers at the Universita Politecnica delle Marche in Ancona combed medical journal articles ... findings are the subject of a new article on the Surviving Mesothelioma website. ... blood, lung fluid or tissue of mesothelioma patients that can help point doctors to ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 A person commits ... the crime scene to track the criminal down. ... U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) uses DNA evidence to ... Sound far-fetched? It,s not. The FDA has ... to support investigations of foodborne illnesses. Put as simply as ...
(Date:6/23/2016)...   EpiBiome , a precision microbiome engineering company, ... financing from Silicon Valley Bank (SVB). The financing will ... its drug development efforts, as well as purchase additional ... has been an incredible strategic partner to us – ... would provide," said Dr. Aeron Tynes Hammack , ...
Breaking Biology Technology: