Take the 2-minute tour ×
Geographic Information Systems Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for cartographers, geographers and GIS professionals. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I have an interesting question:
Is there a dataset by which I can use to test whether two countries are adjacent? For example, if inputs are Mexico and U.S., they are adjacent; if inputs are England and Russia, they are not. Is it easy to produce an adjacency matrix for all the countries?

Edited: This question might be extended as, if we get a political boundary map, is there any ways to produce an adjacency matrix for all the political entities (e.g. Given a map of Florida, can a counties matrix be built to indicate the adjacency of all the counties)

share|improve this question

4 Answers 4

up vote 6 down vote accepted

In ArcGIS 10.1 you can use the Geometry on Geometry Check Tool

enter image description here

and use the 'Spatial Relation Check Touches'

Touches—A part of the feature from feature class 1 comes into contact with the boundary of a feature from feature class 2. The interiors of the features do not intersect.

http://resources.arcgis.com/en/help/main/10.1/index.html#/Finding_geometries_with_spatial_relationships/01020000001n000000/

share|improve this answer
    
what if I have a world map and I want to produce the adjacency matrix for all the country? –  Seen Aug 17 '12 at 21:21
1  
A couple of Questions: Are England and France adjacent? Are Greenland and Canada? United States and Russia? –  mhoran_psprep Aug 18 '12 at 4:46
    
I don't think all of them should be considered as adjacent. @mhoran_psprep –  Seen Aug 18 '12 at 13:04

We provided an easy to use JSON format for country adjacency based on COW dataset, have a look and fork it on github :)

https://github.com/P1sec/country_adjacency

share|improve this answer

Look at the correlates of war dataset. There is an entire army of International Relations Scholars that produce the Correlates of war (COW) dataset. The COW data conceives of the world in terms of "dyadic" or "bilateral" relations. So for example, there is one data point for U.S.-Canada, one for U.S.-Mexico, One for U.K.-France, etc. They have long obsessed over whether Britain and France are considered contiguous or not. Anyway, if you download the data, you should be able to filter it by country name and then join it up with vector data in ArcMap.

share|improve this answer

I've created an ArcGIS 10.0 Add-in that will list adjacent features of a dataset. It also allows you to show adjacent features that share the same attributes.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.