I have Census Areas with some of the Census attributes. Is it possible to take an attribute, for example, percentage of people in full time employment, and derive a spatially smoothed version of the attribute? If so, how would I go about doing this?

I want to do this to stop getting big shocks from one area to another e.g. where one area has 80% unemployment when all the surrounding areas have 10% unemployment.

By spatially smoothed I'm open to different methods e.g. all polygons surrounding the polygon to be smoothed, or looking at all polygons within a set distance and using some distance-weighting. I will also want to iterate through all of the polygons so that they are all smoothed based on the original attributes.

I'm using ArcMap 10.2 but could use ArcMap 10.4, QGIS, or anything else within reason. Census areas are polygons and are all within one feature class.

1 Answer 1


Yes, you can.

You need to use the Geostatical Analyst's "Areal Interpolation" method in ArcGIS. This will give you a statistically sound "smoothed" / interpolated surface for your data.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

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