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Article

Comparing World City Networks by Language: A Complex-Network Approach

by 1,2,*, 2 and 2
1
Urban Future Laboratory of Peking University (Shenzhen), Peking University Shenzhen Graduate School, Shenzhen 518055, China
2
School of Urban Planning & Design, Peking University Shenzhen Graduate School, Shenzhen 518055, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Wolfgang Kainz and Giuseppe Borruso
ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2021, 10(4), 219; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijgi10040219
Received: 1 February 2021 / Revised: 20 March 2021 / Accepted: 23 March 2021 / Published: 1 April 2021
City networks are multiplex and diverse rather than being regarded as part of a single universal model that is valid worldwide. This study contributes to the debate on multiple globalizations by distinguishing multiscale structures of world city networks (WCNs) reflected in the Internet webpage content in English, German, and French. Using big data sets from web crawling, we adopted a complex-network approach with both macroscale and mesoscale analyses to compare global and grouping properties in varying WCNs, by using novel methods such as the weighted stochastic block model (WSBM). The results suggest that at the macro scale, the rankings of city centralities vary across languages due to the uneven geographic distribution of languages and the variant levels of globalization of cities perceived in different languages. At the meso scale, the WSBMs infer different grouping patterns in the WCNs by language, and the specific roles of many world cities vary with language. The probability-based comparative analyses reveal that the English WCN looks more globalized, while the French and German worlds appear more territorial. Using the mesoscale structure detected in the English WCN to comprehend the city networks in other languages may be biased. These findings demonstrate the importance of scrutinizing multiplex WCNs in different cultures and languages as well as discussing mesoscale structures in comparative WCN studies. View Full-Text
Keywords: world city network (WCN); language; complex network; mesoscale structure; webpage big data; weighted stochastic block model (WSBM) world city network (WCN); language; complex network; mesoscale structure; webpage big data; weighted stochastic block model (WSBM)
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MDPI and ACS Style

Zhang, W.; Zhu, J.; Zhao, P. Comparing World City Networks by Language: A Complex-Network Approach. ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2021, 10, 219. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijgi10040219

AMA Style

Zhang W, Zhu J, Zhao P. Comparing World City Networks by Language: A Complex-Network Approach. ISPRS International Journal of Geo-Information. 2021; 10(4):219. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijgi10040219

Chicago/Turabian Style

Zhang, Wenjia, Jiancheng Zhu, and Pu Zhao. 2021. "Comparing World City Networks by Language: A Complex-Network Approach" ISPRS International Journal of Geo-Information 10, no. 4: 219. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijgi10040219

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