Collège Doctoral - Doktorandenkollegien

Statistical Physics of Complex Systems

Coventry - Leipzig - Lviv - Nancy

PhD positions


Title A tale of two cities: Vulnerabilities of the London and Paris transit networks
Authors von Ferber C., Berche B., Holovatch T., Holovatch Yu.
Reference J. Transp. Secur. 5 (2012) 199-216
Abstract This paper analyses the impact of random failure or attack on the public transit networks of London and Paris in a comparative study. In particular we analyze how the dysfunction or removal of sets of stations or links (rails, roads, etc.) affects the connectivity properties within these networks. We show how accumulating dysfunction leads to emergent phenomena that cause the transportation system to break down as a whole. Simulating different directed attack strategies, we find minimal strategies with high impact and identify a-priori criteria that correlate with the resilience of these networks. To demonstrate our approach, we choose the London and Paris public transit networks. Our quantitative analysis is performed in the frames of the complex network theory—a methodological tool that has emerged recently as an interdisciplinary approach joining methods and concepts of the theory of random graphs, percolation, and statistical physics. Our finding is that in almost all respects Paris proves to be significantly more resilient than London due to higher organisation. In conclusion we demonstrate that taking into account cascading effects the network integrity is controlled for both networks by less than 0.5% of the stations i.e. 19 for Paris and 34 for London.

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