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Geocoding Freeform Placenames: An Example of Deciphering the Czech National Immigration Database

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Department of Applied Geoinformatics and Cartography, Faculty of Science, Charles University, Albertov 6, 128 43 Prague, Czech Republic
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Department of Social Geography and Regional Development, Faculty of Science, Charles University, Albertov 6, 128 43 Prague, Czech Republic
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Wolfgang Kainz and Giuseppe Borruso
ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2021, 10(5), 335; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijgi10050335
Received: 14 February 2021 / Revised: 2 May 2021 / Accepted: 9 May 2021 / Published: 15 May 2021
The growth of international migration and its societal and political impacts bring a greater need for accurate data to measure, understand and control migration flows. However, in the Czech immigration database, the birthplaces of immigrants are only kept in freeform text fields, a substantial obstacle to their further processing due to numerous errors in transcription and spelling. This study overcomes this obstacle by deploying a custom geocoding engine based on GeoNames, tailored transcription rules and fuzzy matching in order to achieve good accuracy even for noisy data while not depending on third-party services, resulting in lower costs than the comparable approaches. The results are presented on a subnational level for the immigrants coming to Czechia from the USA, Ukraine, Moldova and Vietnam, revealing important spatial patterns that are invisible on the national level. View Full-Text
Keywords: geocoding; transliteration; transcription; migration; Python; Czechia geocoding; transliteration; transcription; migration; Python; Czechia
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MDPI and ACS Style

Šimbera, J.; Drbohlav, D.; Štych, P. Geocoding Freeform Placenames: An Example of Deciphering the Czech National Immigration Database. ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2021, 10, 335. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijgi10050335

AMA Style

Šimbera J, Drbohlav D, Štych P. Geocoding Freeform Placenames: An Example of Deciphering the Czech National Immigration Database. ISPRS International Journal of Geo-Information. 2021; 10(5):335. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijgi10050335

Chicago/Turabian Style

Šimbera, Jan, Dušan Drbohlav, and Přemysl Štych. 2021. "Geocoding Freeform Placenames: An Example of Deciphering the Czech National Immigration Database" ISPRS International Journal of Geo-Information 10, no. 5: 335. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijgi10050335

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