Exploring the spatiotemporal behavior of Helsinki’s housing prices with fractal geometry and co-integration

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Fractal geometry and co-integration are combined for exploring spatial morphological aspects of quarterly dwelling prices in Helsinki’s region from 1977 to 2011. Curves of fractal scaling behavior are first employed to measure the fractal dimensions of high- and low-price/m2 spatial clusters at multiple scales. Subsequently, the fractal dimensions at indicative neighborhood and citywide scales are modeled with vector error correction specifications. The results identify long-run joint equilibria between the fractal geometries of high- and low-price/m2 clusters at both spatial scales. High-price/m2 clusters exhibit consistently higher fractal dimensions than their low-value counterparts at the neighborhood scale, while this long-run relation is reversed at the citywide scale. Short-run disequilibria and subsequent adjustments are also scale sensitive. The fractal geometry of high-price/m2 clusters leads the dynamics at the neighborhood scale, while low-price/m2 clusters lead at the citywide scale. The system’s responses to exogenous shocks take longer time to stabilize at the neighborhood scale compared to the citywide scale, but in both scales the non-stationary nature of fractal behavior is evident. These elements indicate that a closer look on spatial economic behavior at more than one spatial and temporal scale at a time can reveal non-trivial information in the context of urban research and policy analysis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)133-155
JournalJournal of geographical systems
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • fractals
  • co-integration
  • residential property value
  • multiscale dynamics


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