LSTM Home > LSTM Research > LSTM Online Archive

Do precipitation anomalies influence short-term mobility in sub-saharan Africa? An observational study from 23 countries

Epstein, Adrienne, Harris, Orlando O., Benmarhnia, Tarik, Camlin, Carol S. and Weiser, Sheri D. (2023) 'Do precipitation anomalies influence short-term mobility in sub-saharan Africa? An observational study from 23 countries'. BMC Public Health, Vol 23, Issue 1, e377.

s12889-023-15264-z.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (902kB) | Preview


Precipitation anomalies are associated with a number of poor health outcomes. One potential consequence of precipitation extremes is human geographic mobility. We evaluated the associations between precipitation anomalies (droughts and heavy rains) and short-term mobility in 23 sub-Saharan African countries by linking satellite data on precipitation to cross-sectional representative surveys.

Using data from 23 Demographic and Health Surveys from 2011 to 2017, we estimated the associations between deviations in long-term rainfall trends and short-term mobility among 294,539 women and 136,415 men over 15 years of age. We fit multivariable logistic regression models to assess potential non-linear relationships between rainfall deviations and short-term mobility, adjusting for survey month and socio-demographic covariates, and stratified by participant gender. Furthermore, we assessed whether these associations differed by marital status.

Rainfall deviations were associated with short-term mobility among women, but not men. The relationship between rainfall deviations and mobility among women was U-shaped, such that women had increased marginal probabilities of mobility in instances of both lower and heavier precipitation. Differences between married and unmarried women were also revealed: among married women, we found positive associations between both rainfall deviation extremes (drought and heavy rains) and mobility; however, among unmarried women, there was only a positive association for heavy rains.

Precipitation anomalies were associated with short-term mobility among women, which may be in turn associated with poor health outcomes. More research with longitudinal data is needed to elaborate the associations between weather shocks, mobility, and downstream health impacts.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: QW Microbiology and Immunology > Reference Works. General Immunology > QW 520 Research (General)
QW Microbiology and Immunology > Immune Responses > QW 640 Agglutination. Precipitation
Faculty: Department: Biological Sciences > Vector Biology Department
Digital Object Identifer (DOI):
SWORD Depositor: JISC Pubrouter
Depositing User: JISC Pubrouter
Date Deposited: 21 Mar 2023 10:23
Last Modified: 14 Jun 2023 11:17


View details

Actions (login required)

Edit Item Edit Item