I am honored and excited to be appointed to a second term as chair of the Mapping Science Committee of the U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine.
The Mapping Science Committee organizes and oversees National Research Council studies that provide independent advice to society and to government at all levels on geospatial science, technology, and policy. It also addresses aspects of geographic information science that deal with the acquisition, integration, storage, distribution, and use of spatial data. Through its studies, the committee promotes the informed and responsible development and use of spatial data for the benefit of society.
We have a excellent committee for the 2021-2023 term – accomplished scientists, professionals and leaders in the field, spanning a wide range of geospatial science, technologies and applications:
- Harvey Miller, chair, The Ohio State University
- Stewart Fotheringham, Arizona State University
- Oceana Francis, University of Hawai’i at Manoa
- Hendrik Hamann, IBM T.J. Watson Research Center
- Kristen Kurland, Carnegie Mellon University
- Marguerite Madden, University of Georgia
- Keith Masback, Plum Run, LLC
- Kathleen Stewart, University of Maryland
- Eric Tate, University of Iowa
New paper: Li, Y., Hyder, A., Southerland, L.T., Hammond, G., Porr, A. and Miller, H.J. “311 service requests as indicators of neighborhood distress and opioid use disorder,” Scientific Reports, 10, 19579.
Opioid use disorder and overdose deaths is a public health crisis in the United States, and there is increasing recognition that its etiology is rooted in part by social determinants such as poverty, isolation and social upheaval. Limiting research and policy interventions is the low temporal and spatial resolution of publicly available administrative data such as census data. We explore the use of municipal service requests (also known as “311” requests) as high resolution spatial and temporal indicators of neighborhood social distress and opioid misuse. We analyze the spatial associations between georeferenced opioid overdose event (OOE) data from emergency medical service responders and 311 service request data from the City of Columbus, OH, USA for the time period 2008–2017. We find 10 out of 21 types of 311 requests spatially associate with OOEs and also characterize neighborhoods with lower socio-economic status in the city, both consistently over time. We also demonstrate that the 311 indicators are capable of predicting OOE hotspots at the neighborhood-level: our results show code violation, public health, and street lighting were the top three accurate predictors with predictive accuracy as 0.92, 0.89 and 0.83, respectively. Since 311 requests are publicly available with high spatial and temporal resolution, they can be effective as opioid overdose surveillance indicators for basic research and applied policy.
On September 19 2019, I gave a lecture in the Methods: Mind the Gap Webinar Series of the National Institutes of Health Office of Disease Prevention (ODP): Geospatial data for healthy places: Building environments for active living through opportunistic GIScience. A video of the lecture and slides is posted here
In this lecture, I discuss the role of geospatial technologies and data in facilitating quasi and natural experiments about built environment factors that encourage active living. I also extend this idea to the concept of geographic information observatories: systems for ongoing data collection and analysis that facilitate opportunistic science that can leverage real-world events via ongoing observation, experimentation, and decision-support.