Distribution of socio-economic features in urban space is an important source of information for land and transportation planning. The metropolization phenomenon has changed the distribution of types of professions in space and has given birth to different spatial patterns that the urban planner must know in order to plan a sustainable city. Such distributions can be discovered by statistical and learning algorithms through different methods. In this paper, an unsupervised classification method and a cluster detection method are discussed and applied to analyze the socio-economic structure of Switzerland. The unsupervised classification method, based on Ward’s classification and self-organized maps, is used to classify the municipalities of the country and allows to reduce a highly-dimensional input information to interpret the socio-economic landscape. The cluster detection method, the spatial scan statistics, is used in a more specific manner in order to detect hot spots of certain types of service activities. The method is applied to the distribution services in the agglomeration of Lausanne. Results show the emergence of new centralities and can be analyzed in both transportation and social terms.
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