Introduction to Spatial Interaction Modelling

Course Code


Organised by

The University of Manchester


Dr Andy Newing


24/03/2021 - 25/03/2021


The University of Manchester


View in Google Maps  (M13 9PL)


Claire Spencer -


Spatial Interaction Models (SIMs) are statistical models used to predict origin-destination flows. They are widely applied within geography, planning, transportation and the social sciences to predict interactions or flows related to commuting, migration, access to services etc. They are also widely applied across the commercial sector – for example to model flows of consumers between home and retail centres – with broad applications in commercial decision making and policy evaluation.  

This hands on course equips participants with the skills to build, calibrate and apply spatial interaction models suitable for addressing a range of research questions. We don’t assume any prior knowledge of spatial interaction modelling and build, from scratch, a SIM to capture consumer flows between home and retail stores. This intuitively straightforward example is used to understand the model structure, key theoretical assumptions and the model building and calibration process. We work with this model to understand model disaggregation and we also use this example to highlight one of the major commercial applications of the SIM.   


  • To introduce participants to the family of SIMs and their applications within geography, social sciences, planning and the commercial sector. 
  • To enable participants to build and calibrate SIMs using Microsoft Excel within the application area of modelling retail flows. 
  • To equip participants with the skills to apply their model to predict flows under various ‘what if?’ scenarios. 
  • To encourage participants to evaluate their modelling framework, to assess model performance and to identify opportunities for model enhancement. 



  • Participants should have a good working knowledge of Microsoft Excel. They should be familiar with inputting formulas and working with data across multiple sheets. 
  • As this course is taught online, participants need use of a PC or laptop with a stable internet connection. Their enjoyment of the course will be enhanced if they have access to a web-cam and microphone.  
  • Participants will also require a copy of Microsoft Excel and a PDF reader.

Please note this is course will run from 9:30- 12:30 on the 24th and 25th March.


Intermediate (some prior knowledge)


Total cost price: The fee per teaching day is: • £30 per day for UK/EU registered students • £60 per day for staff at UK/EU academic institutions, UK/EU Research Councils researchers, UK/EU public sector staff, staff at UK/EU registered charity organisations and recognised UK/EU research institutions. • £100 per day for all other participants In the event of cancellation by the delegate a full refund of the course fee is available up to two weeks prior to the course. No refunds are available after this date. If it is no longer possible to run a course due to circumstances beyond its control, NCRM reserves the right to cancel the course at its sole discretion at any time prior to the event. In this event every effort will be made to reschedule the course. If this is not possible or the new date is inconvenient a full refund of the course fee will be given. NCRM shall not be liable for any costs, losses or expenses that may be incurred as a result of the cancellation of a course. The University of Southampton’s Online Store T&Cs also continue to apply.

Website and registration


North West


Spatial Data Analysis

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