Quantifying the Effect of Socio-Economic Predictors and Built Environment on Mental Health Events in Little Rock, AR

by   Alfieri Ek, et al.

Proper allocation of law enforcement resources remains a critical issue in crime prediction and prevention that operates by characterizing spatially aggregated crime activities and a multitude of predictor variables of interest. Despite the critical nature of proper resource allocation for mental health incidents, there has been little progress in statistical modeling of the geo-spatial nature of mental health events in Little Rock, Arkansas. In this article, we provide insights into the spatial nature of mental health data from Little Rock, Arkansas between 2015 and 2018, under a supervised spatial modeling framework while extending the popular risk terrain modeling (Caplan et al., 2011, 2015; Drawve, 2016) approach. We provide evidence of spatial clustering and identify the important features influencing such heterogeneity via a spatially informed hierarchy of generalized linear models, spatial regression models and a tree based method, viz., Poisson regression, spatial Durbin error model, Manski model and Random Forest. The insights obtained from these different models are presented here along with their relative predictive performances. The inferential tools developed here can be used in a broad variety of spatial modeling contexts and have the potential to aid both law enforcement agencies and the city in properly allocating resources.


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