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Lived Population Density and the Spread of COVID-19

Published time: 03 May 2020

Authors: Dave Babbitt, Patrick Garland, Oliver Johnson

Keywords: Europe, virüs, outbreak, job, Rate of Spread , Covid-19


We consider variations in the rate of spread of COVID-19, firstly comparing between European countries and secondly comparing between US states. We show that the population density has a small but significant effect on the rate of spread of the virus. However we show that measures of `lived population density’, which capture density as perceived by a randomly chosen person, do a better job of explaining variations in the rate of spread, achieving R2=0.45R2=0.45 in Europe. We show that adding further measures based on the timing of the outbreak into the regression can increase this to R2=0.58R2=0.58.

Lived population density and the spread of COVID-19



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