Journal of Geo-information Science ›› 2021, Vol. 23 ›› Issue (2): 188-210.doi: 10.12082/dqxxkx.2021.200434

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Review on Spatiotemporal Analysis and Modeling of COVID-19 Pandemic

PEI Tao1,2,*(), WANG Xi1,2, SONG Ci1,2, LIU Yaxi1,2, HUANG Qiang1,2, SHU Hua1,2, CHEN Xiao1,2, GUO Sihui1,2, ZHOU Chenghu1,2   

  1. 1. State Key Laboratory of Resources and Environmental Information System, Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China
    2. University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
  • Received:2020-08-03 Revised:2020-08-21 Online:2021-02-25 Published:2021-04-25
  • Contact: PEI Tao
  • Supported by:
    National Natural Science Foundation of China(42041001);National Natural Science Foundation of China(41525004);National Natural Science Foundation of China(41421001)


The COVID-19 pandemic is the most serious global public health event since the 21 st century, and has become a hot topic concerned by different disciplines. According to the bibliometric analysis, more than 13,000 papers related to the COVID-19 have been published since the beginning of the pandemic. Related researches include not only the pathogenic mechanism of the virus and the development of specific drugs and vaccines from the medical and biological perspectives, but also the non-pharmaceutical prevention and control methods for the pandemic. The latter is the focus of this paper, in which the research progress on the pandemic is discussed from six aspects: detection of transmission relationships, spatiotemporal pattern analysis, prediction models, spread simulation, risk assessment, and impact evaluation. The research on the detection of transmission relationship mainly includes the detection of cluster cases and transmission relations, among which individual trajectory big data have become the key to research. The progress of the analysis of spatiotemporal patterns of the pandemic shows that the spatiotemporal distribution of the pandemic has significant temporal and spatial heterogeneity, and the spatiotemporal transmission presents typical network characteristics. The prediction of the pandemic mainly relies on dynamic models scaling from macro to micro, in which the non-negligible impact of population migration makes the human flow big data become one of the key elements of model prediction accuracy. In the study of epidemic spread simulation, the focus is on evaluating the effects of controlling measures such as traffic restrictions, community prevention and control, and medical resources allocation through simulation methods. Results show that traffic interruption and community control measures are the most effective means among non-pharmaceutical interventions at present, and the guarantee and reasonable deployment of medical resources are the basis for pandemic prevention and control. After the pandemic is controlled under the effective measures, the resumption of work and production must be in an orderly manner. The research on pandemic risk assessment currently focuses on biological factors, natural factors and social factors. As to biological factors, researches show that the underlying disease and the male (due to their high mobility) are related to a higher risk of infection. Among natural factors, temperature, precipitation and climate have limited influence on the spread of the pandemic. As to social factors, human mobility, population density, and differences in medical conditions caused by social inequity have significant influences on the infection rate. Regarding the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, we mainly focus on three aspects: the public psychology, natural environment and economic development. Specifically, the impact of the pandemic is mainly negative on the public psychology and economy, and positive on the natural environment. In conclusion, big data especially individual trajectories and population big data are indeed pervasive in research of non-pharmaceutical intervention. To prevent and control the major outbreaks, the intersection of multiple disciplines and the collaboration of personnel in different fields are indispensable. Although a great progress has been made on various aspects such as the effect of controlling measures and the influencing factors of the pandemic, the spatial traceability, precise prediction and future impact of the pandemic are still unsolved problems.

Key words: COVID-19, bibliometric analysis, transmission relationships, spatiotemporal pattern, prediction models, spread simulation, risk assessment, impact evaluation for the epidemic