Gschlößl, Susanne; Czado, Claudia (2005): Introducing and evaluating a Gibbs sampler for spatial Poisson regression models. Sonderforschungsbereich 386, Discussion Paper 434




In this paper we present a Gibbs sampler for a Poisson model including spatial effects. Frühwirth-Schnatter und Wagner (2004b) show that by data augmentation via the introduction of two sequences of latent variables a Poisson regression model can be transformed into a normal linear model. We show how this methodology can be extended to spatial Poisson regression models and give details of the resulting Gibbs sampler. In particular, the influence of model parameterisation and different update strategies on the mixing of the MCMC chains are discussed. The developed Gibbs samplers are analysed in two simulation studies and appliedto model the expected number of claims for policyholders of a German car insurance data set. In general, both large and small simulated spatial effects are estimated accurately by the Gibbs samplers and reasonable low autocorrelations are obtained when the data variability is rather large. However, for data with very low heterogeneity, the autocorrelations resulting from the Gibbs samplers are very high, withdrawing the computational advantage over a Metropolis Hastings independence sampler which exhibits very low autocorrelations in all settings.