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"Dust blows from what was once the Aral Sea floor. Tragic mismanagement of a natural resource."
The collapse of the Aral Sea ecosystem is (arguably) the worst man-made environmental disaster of the 20th century and 21st century has seen the continuation of the desertification set in motion. Soviet mismanagement, water-intensive cotton production and population growth have all contributed the overtaxing of water resources in the Aral Sea basin, which has resulted in a the shrinking of the Aral Sea--it has lost more of the sea to an expanding desert than the territories of the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg combined. The health problems arising from this issues are large for the entire Aral Sea basin, which encompasses 5 Central Asian countries and it has profoundly changed (for the worse) the local climates. Compare the differences with some historical images of the Aral Sea on Google Earth or on ArcGIS Online (also see this article from GeoCurrents)
Tags: environment, Central Asia, environment modify.
A wonderful resource to boost the EFL students' skills.
This image taken from the International Space Station is just one of hundreds taken by @Cmdr_Hadfield that can be used in the geography classroom. See image gallery http://www.asc-csa.gc.ca/eng/default.asp
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What would John Snow's famous cholera map look like on a modern map of London, using modern mapping tools?
John Snow's cholera map is often noted as a prime example of using spatial thinking to solve a scientific problem. Here are a variety of resources to explore this classic example. Here is an article that highlights the spatial thinking that produced this map, with KML files and in Google Fusion Tables. See also these online GIS layers of Dr. Snow's famous map.
Tags: medical, models, spatial, mapping.
A handful of AIDS cases were first recognized in the U.S. at the beginning of the 1980s. By 1990, there was a pandemic. In 1997, more than 3 million people became newly infected with HIV.
The spread of AIDS/HIV since the 1980s has varied greatly over time and space. The red lines represent Sub-Saharan countries and the dark blue line on this interactive is the regional average of Sub-Saharan African countries. The regional trend was on the rise at the end of the 20th century, but is now on a slight decline (but still an major impact on the continent). Countries such as Botswana and Zimbabwe have made some significant strides in limiting the spread of AIDS (Zimbabwe is the country that 'peaked' in 1997 and has had the steepest decline).
Tags: Africa, medical, development, infographic, diffusion.
With this interactive map, users can explore cancers that disproportionately affect poorer countries. How do these spatial distributions correlate with other developmental, consumption or economic patterns? What surprises you about this data?
Tags: medical, mapping, spatial.
AIDS is a global issue, but clearly this impacts Sub-Saharan Africa far more than any other region.
Tags: Africa, medical, infographic, development.
Extreme poverty in the United States is giving rise to a group of infections known as the neglected tropical diseases, which we ordinarily think of as confined to developing countries.
Poor Americans are more likely to contract tropical diseases such as Chagas disease and dengue fever. Question to ponder: what geographic factors (physical and human) lead poor people in the United States to be more heavily impacted by the spread to these diseases?
Public health crises of the past decade — such as the 2003 SARS outbreak, which spread to 37 countries and caused about 1,000 deaths, and the 2009 H1N1 flu p...
The spread of infectious diseases is inherently connected to the mobility of infected. Airports are important nodes in this complex transportation network. Which airports would have the greatest potential to spread diseases? At MIT, they've gathered data that incorporates variations in travel patterns among individuals, the geographic locations of airports, the disparity in interactions among airports, and waiting times at individual airports to create a tool that could be used to predict where and how fast a disease might spread. To read more, see the associated article.
How we die (in one chart)...
This infographic shows the main causes of death in 1900 in the United States and compares that with the 2010 figures. The United States, during that time underwent what many call the epidemiological transition (in essence, in developed societies we now die for different reason and generally live longer) What are the geographic factors that influence these shifts in the mortality rates? What is better about society? Has anything worsened? How come?
What is the geography of medical practicioners? Why are doctors concentrated more in certain parts of the country? "If anything, this map illustrates how much where you live matters for how much health care you have access to. The 17,000 residents of Clark County, Miss. do not have a single primary care doctor in the area. Up in Manhattan there is one doctor for every 500 people." Click on the link for an interactive ESRI-produced StoryMap.
After a crisis, how can we tell if water is safe to drink? Current tests are slow and complex, and the delay can be deadly, as in the cholera outbreak after Haiti's earthquake in 2010.
The 'Water Canary' is a device to quickly and affordably test if a water supply is contaminated or not. By geocoding the data, when can map out medical outbreaks of malaria and contain the spread of diseases. This seems simple, but it can be revolutionary in how humanitarian aid and emergency relief work is done.
How is drought in East Africa impacting the spread of diseases? Is flu season hitting your city particularly hard this year? Where are the disease problems the worst? All of these question can be answered (in part) by these helpful maps. This site, which depends on crowdsourced data, may need to few more users before it's database is robust enough, but the idea of it is quite amibitious.
Documented by an aid worker, millions of spiders took to the trees to spin their webs after heavy floods inundated Pakistan in 2010.
Besides being an aesthetic wonder, this image is a great way to start a discussion about so many distinct issues. The floods of 2010 devastated the human population, killing over 2,000. These same floods also altered the ecosystem as spiders have needed to adapt to their new inundated landscape as well. For the human population, this has had the shocking benefit of lowering the incidents of malaria since the spiders have more effectively limited the mosquito population. Interconnections...geographic information are a spider web of interconnections between nature and humanity.
I thought that was such a beautiful picture until I learned the tree was covered in spider webs and then it creeped me out. However it is such a good thing for the people there. Those webs will help trap the diseased mesquites.
More about this programme: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00wgq0l Hans Rosling's famous lectures combine enormous quantities of public data with a sport's ...
If you haven't seen this video, it is an incredible data visualization to explain the correlation between income and life expectancy. He uses temporal and spatial markers to show changes from 1810 to the present. If you discuss it in your course, this would help to explain the epidemiological transition.
A cholera outbreak in New York in 1832 led to broad efforts to clean up the city and others like it.
The inhabitants of a small Greek island live on average 10 years longer than the rest of western Europe. So what's the secret to long life in Ikaria?
As more countries have entered the later stages of the Demographic Transition, we expect people to live longer than ever. On this island and other "blue zones" they attribute their long life to a traditional diet and an unpolluted environment.
Tags: aging population, medical, population, demographics, unit 2 population, Greece, Europe.
The stunning drop in global child mortality is proof that poor countries are not doomed to eternal misery. Here's how it happened.
Global health has substantially improved in the last two decades. This article explores the improvements in global health that have been made this year, and the attached interactive feature allows users to explore the changes in global health risks. Click here for the Guardian's version of this same data and interactive.
Tags: medical, historical, spatial, technology, development.
Child mortality info
View Full Lesson on TED-ED BETA: http://ed.ted.com/lessons/how-pandemics-spread In our increasingly globalized world, a single infected person can board a pl...
This is a great demonstration of why spatial thinking is critical to so many fields, including medicine.
Tags: diffusion, medical, historical, spatial.
From technology to equality, five ways the world is getting better all the time...
This article by former President of the United States Bill Clinton, outlines numerous ways that globalization can improve the world, especially in developing regions. He uses examples from around the world and includes numerous geographic themes.
Tags: technology, medical, economic, gender, class, globalization, development, worldwide.
Robyn shares her personal story and how it inspired her current path as a "Real Food" evangelist. Grounded in a successful Wall Street career that was more i...
Robyn authored "The Unhealthy Truth: How Our Food Is Making Us Sick and What We Can Do About It." A former Wall Street food industry analyst, Robyn brings insight, compassion and detailed analysis to her research into the impact that the global food system is having on the health of our children. As new proteins are engineered into our food supply to maximize profits for the food industry, childhood food allergies are on the rise. What are the connections between cancer and modern consumption patterns? The correlation is clearly there; is causation also present? How have the economics of agriculture shaped this situation? How will the future economics of agriculture reshape food production?
A decade ago, Botswana was facing a national crisis as AIDS appeared on the verge of decimating the country's adult population. Now, the country provides free, life-saving AIDS drugs to almost all of its citizens who need them.
This is a great example, and possibly a template on how to tackle the AIDS/HIV crisis in Sub-Saharan Africa. Botswana was as hard hit as any country, but they fully invested their economic initiatives into tackling this and actively changed cultural attitudes and behaviors that faciliate transmission. Not all is 'doom and gloom' when looking at poverty and disease-stricken countries.
The neighborhoods in which children and adolescents live and spend their time play a role in whether or not they eat a healthy diet, get enough exercise or become obese, concludes a collection of studies in a special theme issue of the American...
Spatial analysis shows that numerous disciplines can utilize the 'geographic advantage' to improve research.
The Guardian's health editor introduces our health factfile - and the full dataset behind it...
Discussion questions: What regional patterns are there in the per capita healthcare spending? What connection would you expect between per capita health care spending and the quantity of doctors? What areas spend the least on healthcare? How come?
The collapse of the Aral Sea ecosystem is (arguably) the worst man-made environmental disaster of the 20th century. Soviet mismanagement, water-intensive cotton production and population growth have all contributed the overtaxing of water resources in the Aral Sea basin, which has resulted in a the shrinking of the Aral Sea--it has lost more of the sea to an expanding desert than the territories of the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg combined. The health problems arising from this issues are large for the entire Aral Sea basin, which encompasses 5 Central Asian countries and it has profoundly changed (for the worse) the local climates.
From http://www.witness.org | "Awaiting Tomorrow" tells the story people living with HIV/AIDS in the war-torn Eastern region of the Democratic Republic of Congo...
This video provides a chilling glimpse into the struggle of Africans with AIDS/HIV without sufficient medical care.
Justine Ojambo, co-founder of the SLF-funded project PEFO in Uganda, talks about losing his mother to AIDS and PEFO's work to support children orphaned by AI...
THis is a great video on AIDS/HIV in Africa. So many show Africans as passive victims of global and environmental forces beyond their control, this one is of empowered and inspiring people seeking to change the world. For more inspiration AIDS/HIVS videos from Africa, see: http://stephenlewisfoundation.org/news-resources/multimedia/video-clips
One thing that stuck out to me in this video is when he spoke about the making sure the children’s basic needs are met so they can concentrate on school. That is such a problem in our education system today that people don’t wish to address. I wonder how our education system would be if we made sure our children also had their basic needs met.