Angela Okune Annotations

Angela Okune's picture
In response to:

What claims are being made about COVID-19 and how is data leveraged or not?

Thursday, May 14, 2020 - 7:41pm

AO: There is very little transparency on this site about the sources for this data. The only section where I was able to find links to a source (other than the Google data) was the second data visualization on "Africa: Confirmed COVID-19 Cases" which states the source as Worldometer Data When I dug further into what the sources of the Worldometer Data are, I found this:

"Our sources include Official Websites of Ministries of Health or other Government Institutions and Government authorities' social media accounts. Because national aggregates often lag behind the regional and local health departments' data, part of our work consists in monitoring thousands of daily reports released by local authorities. Our multilingual team also monitors press briefings' live streams throughout the day. Occasionally, we can use a selection of leading and trusted news wires with a proven history of accuracy in communicating the data reported by Governments in live press conferences before it is published on the Official Websites."

They provide some details on some of their country specific sources, but not a single country in Africa has its data sources explicitly identified leading me to question their physical reach on the continent. Furthermore, if the majority of their sources are official government ministries which are already being critiqued for their data and reporting... this causes me to again question the validity of all of these data visualizations.

Creative Commons Licence

What data infrastructure supports efforts to understand and respond to COVID-19? What data is being generated to better understand COVID-19 and where is it being stored/analyzed/collected and to what effects?

Thursday, May 14, 2020 - 7:32pm

AO: This Pathways International "COVID-19 Data Center" includes a section on "community mobility reports" which pulls from Google. The site directly repastes language from the original Google site about how the data aims to provide "insights into what has changed in response to policies aimed at combating COVID-19." The Google dataset is global and it is unclear how many users data contribute to the overall datasets. When I downloaded the Kenya specific dataset (which is only available as a PDF), there is no sense of what the overall total population included in the sample size is and the majority of the document states "there is not enough data". If there is not enough data at the country level in Kenya which has one of the highest mobile phone penetration rates on the continent, why would I trust what the "data" (or lack thereof) says about any other African country? It is highly problematic if a limited sample of individuals across the entire continent are being aggregated and then represented as COVID-19 in "Africa" in the aggregate...

Creative Commons Licence