A statistical commentary on mineral prospectivity analysis
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© Springer International Publishing AG. All rights reserved. We compare and contrast several statistical methods for predicting the occurrence of mineral deposits on a regional scale. Methods include logistic regression, Poisson point process modelling, maximum entropy, monotone regression, nonparametric curve estimation, recursive partitioning, and ROC (Receiver Operating Characteristic) curves. We discuss the use and interpretation of these methods, the relationships between them, their strengths and weaknesses from a statistical standpoint, and fallacies about them. Potential improvements and extensions include models with a flexible functional form; techniques which take account of sampling effort, deposit endowment and spatial association between deposits; conditional simulation and prediction; and diagnostics for validating the analysis.