The World Health Organization declared the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID19) a pandemic, on March 11, 2020, pointing to the over 118,000 cases in over 110 countries and territories around the world that time. When writing this project (June, 2020), the number of confirmed cases has been surging rapidly past 7,5 million mark, emphasizing the sustained risk of further global spread. In this convoluted context, governments in Romania and worldwide have imposed movement restrictions to reduce virus transmissions. These preventive measures caused undesirable socio-economic effects such as unemployment, migration crisis, psychological trauma, etc.
In parallel, some pundits have claimed that COVID19 case variations are to be accounted for not only by the policy interventions but also by weather conditions. However, the scientific results reported so far are inconclusive. Given this context, our project aims to extend the knowledge of how human mobility and weather conditions impact upon the COVID19 spread. Specifically, we examine the role of human-to-human virus transmission networks and travel patterns in the COVID19 outbreak in Romania. Also, we study the effects of weather conditions on the virus spread while taking stock of traveling flows, socio-economic and policy factors. We advance a novel approach that combines methods from social network science and physics. Results are expected to support authorities in managing COVID19 later stages and in handling socio-economic associated challenges.
This project seeks to address the effects of human mobility networks and weather conditions on the outbreak and spread of COVID-19, in Romania.
Specifically, our first objective is to examine the role of human mobility networks in the virus outbreak and spread.
Our second objective is to assess the impact of weather parameters (e.g., temperature, humidity, wind power and rainfall) on the spread of COVID-19. Our third objective is to formulate recommendations for authorities to manage human mobility and tailor preventive measures in the context of COVID-19 pandemic.
Funding: We acknowledge financial support from the Executive Agency for Higher Education, Research, Development and Innovation Funding (PN-III-P4-ID-PCE-2020-2828), project implementation: 36 months (January, 4, 2021 – December, 31, 2023). Project director: Marian-Gabriel Hâncean