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    Location, location, location: what can geographic information science (GIS) offer sexual health research?

    Simms, I. and Gibin, Maurizio and Petersen, J. (2014) Location, location, location: what can geographic information science (GIS) offer sexual health research? Sexually Transmitted Infections 90 (6), pp. 442-443. ISSN 1368-4973.

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    Person, time, place is a mantra recited often when describing infectious disease epidemiology. To date sexual health research has been largely focused on individual demographic characteristics, sexual networks and behaviours. However, location is increasingly recognised as an important determinant of incidence and studies that include geographic information systems (GIS) techniques are being published in Sexually Transmitted Infections and elsewhere.1 Blanchard and Aral suggested that an individual's sexual health outcomes are highly dependent on those of others and the local environment, an influence exerted through sexual networks, risk behaviours and systems based around social interaction, education, microbiological factors, as well as healthcare provision and access behaviour.2 Spatial variation in the epidemiology of sexual health has been widely described and the success of intervention strategies is seen as being dependent on ‘knowing your epidemic, globally and locally’.3 GIS techniques allow researchers to explore characteristics that make locations inherently similar or unique. Here we focus on the local level as we consider how geospatial analysis can enrich our knowledge of the epidemiology and public health impact of sexual health, and consider the ethical, governance and technical challenges associated with this rapidly emerging field.


    Item Type: Article
    School: School of Social Sciences, History and Philosophy > Department of Geography
    Depositing User: Administrator
    Date Deposited: 11 Jun 2014 14:11
    Last Modified: 30 Sep 2014 13:23


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