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The University of Southampton
Population Health

Disease mobility in the 21st century Event

Andy Tatem
8 May 2013
Building 44, Lecture Theatre A

For more information regarding this event, please email Dr Julian Leyland at .

Event details

A lecture by Andy Tatem

Initially, infectious diseases could spread only as fast and far as people could walk, then as fast and far as horses could gallop and ships could sail. With the advent of truly global travel, the last five centuries have seen many diseases become global pandemics. The current reach, volume and speed of travel are unprecedented, with human spatial mobility increasing in high income countries by over 1000-fold since 1800. Air travel in particular has changed the epidemiological landscape of the world over the last half century, providing routes from one side of the Earth to the other that can be traversed by an infected person in significantly shorter times than it takes for them to show symptoms.

Such large increases in human and disease mobility over recent decades mean that traditional quarantine-style approaches are no longer appropriate for halting disease spread, and an emphasis on targeted surveillance is required. Dr Tatem will discuss how multidisciplinary approaches drawing on the fields of geography, statistics, computer science, demography, medicine and mathematics can guide the design of surveillance systems and mitigation strategies. He will outline how the advent of novel digital datasets, such as mobile phone call data and night time satellite imagery, is increasing our abilities to measure human movement dynamics across large areas in these regions, and when combined with mathematical models of disease transmission, can provide valuable evidence for informing control policies.


If you have colleagues in other faculties or institutions that you think might appreciate an invitation then please send their contact details to Dr Julian Leyland ( see below) who will ensure that they receive a personal invitation.


mapping human populations at risk of malaria

Speaker information

Andrew Tatem,Biography Dr Andy Tatem is a Reader in the Department of Geography and Environment. He completed his PhD at the University of Southampton in 2001 and has since held positions at the Universities of Oxford and Florida, before returning to Southampton in January. His research is principally focused on malaria epidemiology, the role of human mobility on disease spread, and spatial demography, and his work has been published in many high profile journals, including Nature, Science and the Lancet. He is director of the AfriPop and AsiaPop population mapping projects, the human mobility mapping project and the vector-borne disease airline importation risk project.

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