Mapping the spread of malaria
Within the world of epidemiology, Telenor’s researchers found a new challenge in the study of the spread of multiple-drug-resistant (MDR) malaria. This type of malaria is particularly dangerous, as it poses a threat to the global efforts to control and eliminate the disease. Due to travel, MDR malaria has recently spread from Cambodia to several Asian countries, some of which Telenor is operating in (Thailand and Myanmar). With Bangladesh representing the key boundary between Southeast Asia and the rest of the world, Telenor will, together with key partners such as Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health and Mahidol Oxford Research Unit (MORU), use human mobility data to understand the spread in Thailand, Myanmar and Bangladesh.
The aim of the study is to model population movements that spread drug-resistant forms of malaria. In addition to working with established partners, the research team will work directly with local malaria control programmes, international universities and organisations, with the ultimate goal of containing this emerging threat to health in the region. With the knowledge of how and where the drug resistance spreads, the local programmes can more effectively target campaigns to contain resistance.
The mobile industry’s role and possibilities within Big Data for Social Good
Many private sector players gather and own data that, in cooperation with governmental bodies, NGOs or others, can be used to predict the spread of epidemics and diseases, natural disasters or environmental pollution. To read more about how telecommunications companies are working with Big Data, you should check out GSMA’s website.