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Utility, Accessibility and Entropy in Spatial Modelling

Stein Hansen
The Swedish Journal of Economics
Vol. 74, No. 1, Economics of Location: Theory and Policy Aspects (Mar., 1972), pp. 35-44
Published by: Wiley on behalf of The Scandinavian Journal of Economics
DOI: 10.2307/3439008
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3439008
Page Count: 10
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Utility, Accessibility and Entropy in Spatial Modelling
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Abstract

Information theory and physics have provided the concept of entropy now widely used in urban and regional modelling. The author shows how this concept in principle can be related to the traditional utility concept and reveals the lack of uniqueness of entropy as a substitute for utility in goal functions. The non-economist's accessibility concept is then discussed. It is shown how this spatial system property can be analyzed generally by means of utility maximization while the entropy and other empirical approaches are shown to be special cases of the utility approach with respect to deriving gravitational formulae.

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