Calling for validation: demonstrating the use of mobile phone data to validate integrated land use transportation models


  • Shan Jiang
  • Laura Viña-Arias
  • Christopher Zegras
  • Joseph Ferreira
  • Marta Gonzalez



In this paper we demonstrate the use of a particular source of ICT data, Mobile phones, generated and provided by a mobile phone service provider, to help validate an integrated land use transportation (LUT) model calibrated for the Lisbon, Portugal, metropolitan area (hereafter LMA). Specifically, we use 1 month of anonymous data provided by a private cell phone network operator. These data allowed us to identify, for each phone, all phone activity, localized to the nearest cellular telephone tower (601 towers in LMA). We use the cellular phone towers to generate analysis zones consistent with existing statistical and administrative boundaries (i.e., census blocks and civil parishes). We also infer, for each cell phone tower analysis zone, the number of phones that “reside” and/or “work” in that zone, based on the phone activity profile generated over the observed month.