In collaboration with epidemiologists and researchers at the COVID Mobility Data Network, we built this dashboard as an enhanced offering to public health officials that builds further on others’ early work product.
Like these COVID-19 mobility dashboards, Camber Systems aggregates location data into recognized population mobility metrics. However, this project uses several unique metrics that will provide a more accurate and actionable understanding of the effectiveness of social distancing and other policy interventions aimed at reducing or slowing the spread of COVID-19 in two important ways.
First, using our experience at Camber and the experience of the epidemiological teams, we’ve focused on two unique metrics — Uncorrelated Shannon Entropy and Radius of Gyration — to describe “how” people move, rather than “how far” they move. For example, measuring only movement between counties does not indicate whether this movement is predictable; meaning that it may be tied to either people coming to and from work (predictable), or people socializing (unpredictable).
Second, by merging multiple data sources together we are able to reduce errors and be more representative of the larger population, while further increasing privacy. Through the use of location data from mobile applications on smartphones, we believe that by refining, cleaning, anonymizing and carefully standardizing this data, public-health researchers are better able to evaluate the similarity and differences between the results across the multiple datasets.
With these broad data sets and tailored metrics, researchers are able to better understand how population mobility data can inform social-distancing interventions in response to COVID-19. This dashboard — to protect privacy and other civil liberties — is aggregated at the county level. For researchers, we provide data to the census-tract level. Building on the work done by others, this dashboard is an effort to contribute to the invaluable work being done to support public health researchers in some of the hardest questions and decisions of our lives.