Coronavirus Impacts

Lack of Data Hampers COVID Predictions, But Models Still Matter

Models are not meant to predict the future perfectly – yet they’re still useful. Biomedical mathematician Lester Caudill, who is currently teaching a class focused on COVID-19 and modeling, explains the limitations of models and how to better understand them.

2 years ago
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Coronavirus UK – Models or Crystal Balls?

As far back as we have records, humans have tried to predict the future. Some societies turned to prayer, divination or oracles. Others to tarot cards or crystal balls. In the modern world, much of that function is fulfilled by mathematical models. Is this new technology of forecasting really an upgrade?

2 years ago
1924

Our Crisis Fatigue Crisis and the Politics of Coronavirus

After two decades that have almost been defined by wave upon wave of crises, argues Matthew Flinders, it’s possible that the public has simply become immune to warnings from politicians and habitually distrustful of their claims.

2 years ago
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An Open Letter on the COVID-19 Crisis to Young Social Science Scholars

‘I think,’ writes Damon J. Phillips, ‘ that this suggests that you happen to be coming along in a new era that will be stressful to live through, but also one that will fuel the best of our scholarship. In the coming years and decades there will be an urgency around different questions framed by our current crises.’

2 years ago
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Lessons From a Coronavirus Symptom-Tracking App (That’s Free)

“Rather than sending out thousands of online or paper questionnaires, we teamed up with health data science company ZOE to develop a simple symptom-monitoring app called COVIDradar. The app was made from scratch in about four days and would normally take four months. Volunteer citizen scientists use it to report their health status daily and note the appearance of any new symptoms. Once we realized that there was nothing similar available in the UK to monitor symptoms on a population-wide level, we decided to make the app freely available to all.”

2 years ago
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Nudge

Coronavirus Crisis Putting UK Nudging to the Test

If the promises of behavioral science can be believed, the UK government’s use of it would potentially minimize economic disruption while still tackling the crisis. This is because, in theory, behavioral science can achieve desirable behaviors without significantly impacting other day-to-day activities. However, the question is whether in practice behavioral science is helping to mitigate disaster.

2 years ago
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Empty university classroom

COVID, the Census, and the Looming University Undercount

Counties with large universities depend heavily on student responses to the decennial census, because the census counts determine the levels of federal funding communities receive. And if those students are counted as being there …?

2 years ago
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