Research

The Current Scale of the Pandemic

A number of outlets provide statistics on the local scale of the pandemic. These should be interpreted cautiously, given that the availability of testing varies significantly.

  • USAFacts- Mapping the COVID-19 Outbreak
    USAFacts uses federal and state websites to compile statistics on COVID-19 cases and deaths at the county level. This data is updated daily
  • City Observatory- Metro Incidence Estimates (3.25)
    Joe Cortright at City Observatory calculates metro-level statistics on COVID cases, using the USAfacts data

Analysis of COVID-19 Transmission

We are beginning to understand the area factors driving the transmission of COVID-19. These analyses attempt to identify spatial regularities in how the virus is spread, keeping in mind that pandemics have a significant random component

  • Fan et al. in Emerging Infectious Disease “Epidemiology of 2019 Novel Coronavirus Disease-19 in Gansu Province, China, 2020The study examines the transmission from the home region Wuhan to Gansu, two provinces away. This is equivalent to studying how the virus spreads from Seattle to Montana in the US (map below) They find that the disease entered the new province via the most externally connected and cosmopolitan area of Gansu, Lanzhou, including the downtown area of Chengguan. This finding confirms epidemiological models which emphasize population density as a key predictor of spread.

Local Risk Factors

American cities are vulnerable to COVID-19 at different rates, by din of their demographics and economic structures. Areas with high proportions of senior citizens and high rates of certain medical conditions are more vulnerable, as are areas that rely more on F2F services.

  • New York Times The Workers Who Face the Greatest Corona Virus Risk
    Jobs in hospitals and clinics and frontline service jobs are the most exposed to COVID 19, based on analysis by the New York Times’ Lazaro Gamio of the BLS O*NET data. This implies that cities more specialized in these jobs are more exposed. Current work by Todd Gabe and Richard Florida seeks to map these trends and will be published soon.

Coronavirus Map

By Mitch Smith, Karen Yourish, Sarah Almukhtar, Keith Collins, Amy Harmon, Allison McCann and Jin Wu
Click here for most recent map