Does Climate Variability Impact COVID-19 Outbreak? An Enhanced Semantics-Driven Theory-Guided Model

Article Type

Research Article

Publication Title

SN Computer Science


COVID-19, a life-threatening infection by novel coronavirus, has broken out as a pandemic since December 2019. Eventually, with the aim of helping the World Health Organization and other health regulators to combat COVID-19, significant research effort has been exerted during last several months to analyze how the various factors, especially the climatic aspects, impact on the spread of this infection. However, due to insufficient test and lack of data transparency, these research findings, at times, are found to be inconsistent as well as conflicting. In our work, we aim to employ a semantics-driven probabilistic framework for analyzing the causal influence as well as the impact of climate variability on the COVID-19 outbreak. The idea here is to tackle the data inadequacy and uncertainty issues using probabilistic graphical analysis along with embedded technology of incorporating semantics from climatological domain. Furthermore, the theoretical guidance from epidemiological model additionally helps the framework to better capture the pandemic characteristics. More significantly, we further enhance the impact analysis framework with an auxiliary module of measuring semantic relatedness on regional basis, so as to realistically account for the existence of multiple climate types within a single spatial region. This added notion of regional semantic relatedness further helps us to attain improved probabilistic analysis for modeling the climatological impact on this disease outbreak. Experimentation with COVID-19 datasets over 15 states (or provinces) belonging to varying climate regions in India, demonstrates the effectiveness of our semantically-enhanced theory-guided data-driven approach. It is worth noting that our proposed framework and the relevant semantic analyses are generic enough for intelligent as well as explainable impact analysis in many other application domains, by introducing minimal augmentation.



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Open Access, Bronze, Green

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