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A machine learning evaluation of the effects of South Africa's COVID-19 lockdown measures on population mobility

Show simple item record Whata, A. and Chimedza, C. 2022-04-21T08:54:49Z 2022-04-21T08:54:49Z 2021
dc.description.abstract first_pagesettings Open AccessArticle A Machine Learning Evaluation of the Effects of South Africa’s COVID-19 Lockdown Measures on Population Mobility by Albert Whata 1,*ORCID andCharles Chimedza 2ORCID 1 School of Natural and Applied Sciences, Sol Plaatje University, Kimberley 8301, South Africa 2 School of Statistics and Actuarial Science, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg 2050, South Africa * Author to whom correspondence should be addressed. Academic Editor: Isaac Triguero Mach. Learn. Knowl. Extr. 2021, 3(2), 481-506; Received: 31 March 2021 / Revised: 28 April 2021 / Accepted: 11 May 2021 / Published: 1 June 2021 Download PDF Browse Figures Review Reports Citation Export Abstract Following the declaration by the World Health Organisation (WHO) on 11 March 2020, that the global COVID-19 outbreak had become a pandemic, South Africa implemented a full lockdown from 27 March 2020 for 21 days. The full lockdown was implemented after the publication of the National Disaster Regulations (NDR) gazette on 18 March 2020. The regulations included lockdowns, public health measures, movement restrictions, social distancing measures, and social and economic measures. We developed a hybrid model that consists of a long-short term memory auto-encoder (LSTMAE) and the kernel quantile estimator (KQE) algorithm to detect change-points. Thereafter, we utilised the Bayesian structural times series models (BSTSMs) to estimate the causal effect of the lockdown measures. The LSTMAE and KQE, successfully detected the changepoint that resulted from the full lockdown that was imposed on 27 March 2020. Additionally, we quantified the causal effect of the full lockdown measure on population mobility in residential places, workplaces, transit stations, parks, grocery and pharmacy, and retail and recreation. In relative terms, population mobility at grocery and pharmacy places decreased significantly by −17,137.04% (p-value = 0.001 < 0.05). In relative terms, population mobility at transit stations, retail and recreation, workplaces, parks, and residential places decreased significantly by −998.59% (p-value = 0.001 < 0.05), −1277.36% (p-value = 0.001 < 0.05), −2175.86% (p-value = 0.001 < 0.05), −370.00% (p-value = 0.001< 0.05), and −22.73% (p-value = 0.001 < 0.05), respectively. Therefore, the full lockdown Level 5 imposed on March 27, 2020 had a causal effect on population mobility in these categories of places. en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.publisher Academic open Access Publishing. en_US
dc.subject causal effect; encoder–decoder; kernel quantile estimator; long-short term memory; population mobility; reconstruction error en_US
dc.title A machine learning evaluation of the effects of South Africa's COVID-19 lockdown measures on population mobility en_US
dc.type Article en_US

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