Using mobile phone data to track people’s movement can help to provide a more detailed picture of urban exposure to pollution, new research has concluded.

Typically cities calculate levels of exposure to particulate matter based on air quality readings from fixed locations.

But a study led by researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and focusing on New York City found that exposure levels differed significantly when the daily movement of 8.5 million people was accounted for.

“The traditional way to look at pollution is to have a few measurement stations and use those to look at pollution levels. But that’s sensitive to where the measuring stations are,” said director of MIT’s Senseable City Lab, where the study was conducted, Carlo Ratti. “If you want to quantify exposure, you also need to know where people are.”

Continue reading the article on ITS UK Review.