2018 Vector-Borne and Water-Related Disease Workshop

There will be a webcast of this event

Overall Vision

The purpose of this workshop is to share some success stories to showcase how NASA data are being used to inform, predict, and better understand water-related and vector-borne disease. We hope to include researchers, government agencies, NGOs, educators, and a wide cross-section that includes potential end users to assist us in improving the applicability for these data. This event is done in collaboration with the NASA's GPM Disease Initiative.

About the Project:

Vector-borne diseases are responsible for over 17% of all the infectious diseases globally. Many of these diseases are preventable through protective measures, provided local authorities are aware of the potential outbreaks of the responsible vectors. Vectors are living organisms that are able to transmit diseases between humans or from animals to humans. These diseases include but are not limited to cholera, malaria, dengue fever, Zika, schistosomiasis, and West Nile fever.

The vectors include mosquitoes, ticks, sandflies, fleas, and other insects. NASA data sets can be used to identify environmental conditions that may result in the onset of vector-borne diseases. These environmental conditions include surface temperature, air temperature, precipitation, soil moisture, vegetation, and evapotranspiration.  At the present time, many researchers are using these data sets but most operational users have not begun to take advantage of the availability of these data sets.

Other water related diseases including cholera can have widespread impacts on populations and are directly related to water presence, sanitation, and quality, environmental variables often disrupted during extreme events and natural disasters.

In an effort to further explore the linkages and research/operational applications of NASA water resource data and disease; GPM is launching an applications campaign.  Some of the deliverables from this campaign will include:

A workshop in the spring of 2018

End-user stories and interviews documented through several channels to support case studies

New visualization(s) and NASA stories to describe these linkages

Activities to engage the general public in understanding how NASA data sets can be used to inform the prediction of the onset of Zika, West Nile virus, cholera, and other diseases (e.g. Museum Alliance webinars)

An online resource page which includes a continuum of resources which would be useful for general audiences in a variety of settings


Anticipated Outcomes

  • Participants will get a broader understanding about the availability and accessibility of NASA EOS data to enhance the prediction and response to vector-borne and water-related disease
  • Participants will get a broader perspective on the needs of operational end-users, such as public health officials, government and NGO’s who work to reduce the onset and/or respond to outbreaks of these diseases
  • Participants will gain an understanding of the research efforts of NASA EOS and PMM data “Early Adopters” who will share the results of their research and/or operational response activities
  • Participants will be aware of a wide range of resources they can use to conduct outreach activities to make the general public aware of the possibilities of using NASA EOS and PMM data to predict and respond to vector-borne and water-related diseases.



For questions about this event, please contact Dr. Anne Bowser at anne.bowser@wilsoncenter.org