Assessing innovation: Dynamics of high-rise development in an Israeli city

Jonatan Almagor, Itzhak Benenson, Nurit Alfasi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Urban models serve as laboratories, providing researchers with the opportunity to assess the impact of a wide range of social and economic processes on the development of a built environment. Novelty and unexpected changes play an essential role in this development, but these are difficult to formalize and imitate. Typically, urban models simulate innovation by introducing stochastic fluctuations of the pre-established development rules. This research offers a methodology for assessing innovation in a developing city and examining its impact on urban development. The methodology is implemented in the Israeli city of Netanya, where urban development is analyzed at a resolution of single buildings over a period of three decades. We recognize two types of innovation: spatial innovation, manifested by leapfrogging residential clusters that establish new development areas; and contextual innovation, manifested by residential clusters that include buildings that are substantially higher than their surroundings. We demonstrate the impact of few innovative residential clusters on urban development in the following decades and highlight the diffusion of innovation in the city.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)253-274
Number of pages22
JournalEnvironment and Planning B: Urban Analytics and City Science
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2018


  • Built environment
  • development process
  • self-organization
  • urban dynamics
  • urban simulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Urban Studies
  • Architecture
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Nature and Landscape Conservation


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