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Concept: World Bank


Rabies is a notoriously underreported and neglected disease of low-income countries. This study aims to estimate the public health and economic burden of rabies circulating in domestic dog populations, globally and on a country-by-country basis, allowing an objective assessment of how much this preventable disease costs endemic countries.

Concepts: Epidemiology, World Bank, Dog health, Hookworm, Fox


Debate over the measurement of global poverty in low- and middle-income countries continues unabated. There is considerable controversy surrounding the ‘dollar a day’ measure used to monitor progress against the Millennium Development Goals. This article shines fresh light on the debate with new empirical analyses of poverty (including child poverty), inequality and deprivation levels in the Pacific island state of Vanuatu. The study focuses not only on economic and monetary metrics and measures, but also the measures of deprivation derived from sociology in relation to shelter, sanitation, water, information, nutrition, health and education. Until recently, there had been few, if any, attempts to study poverty and deprivation disparities among children in this part of the world. Different measures yield strikingly different estimates of poverty. The article, therefore, attempts to situate the study findings in the broader international context of poverty measurement and discusses their implications for future research and the post-2015 development agenda.

Concepts: Poverty, Pacific Ocean, World Bank, Sanitation, Millennium Development Goals, Poverty reduction, Pacific Islands, Extreme poverty


Prevalence of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) is increasing globally, with the greatest projected increases in low-income and middle-income countries. We sought to quantify the proportion of Cochrane evidence relating to NCDs derived from such countries.

Concepts: Disease, Poverty, Evidence-based medicine, Cochrane Collaboration, Cochrane Library, Randomized controlled trial, World Bank, Globalization


Globalization describes processes of greater integration of the world economy through increased flows goods, services, capital and people. Globalization has undergone significant transformation since the 1970s, entrenching neoliberal economics as the dominant model of global market integration. Although this transformation has generated some health gains, since the 1990s it has also increased health disparities.

Concepts: Economics, World Bank, Trade, Globalization, Neoliberalism, Economy, Capitalism, Free market


As the deadline for the millennium development goals approaches, it has become clear that the goals linked to maternal and newborn health are the least likely to be achieved by 2015. It is therefore critical to ensure that all possible data, tools and methods are fully exploited to help address this gap. Among the methods that are under-used, mapping has always represented a powerful way to ‘tell the story’ of a health problem in an easily understood way. In addition to this, the advanced analytical methods and models now being embedded into Geographic Information Systems allow a more in-depth analysis of the causes behind adverse maternal and newborn health (MNH) outcomes. This paper examines the current state of the art in mapping the geography of MNH as a starting point to unleashing the potential of these under-used approaches. Using a rapid literature review and the description of the work currently in progress, this paper allows the identification of methods in use and describes a framework for methodological approaches to inform improved decision-making. The paper is aimed at health metrics and geography of health specialists, the MNH community, as well as policy-makers in developing countries and international donor agencies.

Concepts: Geographic information system, Map, World Bank, Maternal death, United Nations, Millennium Development Goals, Maternal health, Poverty reduction


OpenStreetMap, a crowdsourced geographic database, provides the only global-level, openly licensed source of geospatial road data, and the only national-level source in many countries. However, researchers, policy makers, and citizens who want to make use of OpenStreetMap (OSM) have little information about whether it can be relied upon in a particular geographic setting. In this paper, we use two complementary, independent methods to assess the completeness of OSM road data in each country in the world. First, we undertake a visual assessment of OSM data against satellite imagery, which provides the input for estimates based on a multilevel regression and poststratification model. Second, we fit sigmoid curves to the cumulative length of contributions, and use them to estimate the saturation level for each country. Both techniques may have more general use for assessing the development and saturation of crowd-sourced data. Our results show that in many places, researchers and policymakers can rely on the completeness of OSM, or will soon be able to do so. We find (i) that globally, OSM is ∼83% complete, and more than 40% of countries-including several in the developing world-have a fully mapped street network; (ii) that well-governed countries with good Internet access tend to be more complete, and that completeness has a U-shaped relationship with population density-both sparsely populated areas and dense cities are the best mapped; and (iii) that existing global datasets used by the World Bank undercount roads by more than 30%.

Concepts: Population density, Policy, Map, World Bank, Globalization, Google Maps, Aerial photography, OpenStreetMap


Globally, the status of women’s health falls short of its potential. In addition to the deleterious ethical and human rights implications of this deficit, the negative economic impact may also be consequential, but these mechanisms are poorly understood. Building on the literature that highlights health as a driver of economic growth and poverty alleviation, we aim to systematically investigate the broader economic benefits of investing in women’s health.

Concepts: Africa, Poverty, Economics, Investment, World Bank, Economic development, Poverty reduction, Extreme poverty


The United Nations Millennium Development Goals galvanized global efforts to alleviate suffering of the world’s poorest people through unprecedented public-private partnerships. Donor aid agencies have demonstrably saved millions of lives that might otherwise have been lost to disease through increased access to quality-assured vaccines and medicines. Yet, the introduction of these health interventions in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) continues to face a time lag due to factors which remain poorly understood.

Concepts: Malaria, Poverty, World Bank, United Nations, Millennium Development Goals, International development, United Nations General Assembly, Poverty reduction


Appendicitis is the most common abdominal surgical emergency worldwide. Differences between high- and low-income settings in the availability of laparoscopic appendectomy, alternative management choices, and outcomes are poorly described. The aim was to identify variation in surgical management and outcomes of appendicitis within low-, middle-, and high-Human Development Index (HDI) countries worldwide.

Concepts: Africa, Surgery, World Bank, General surgery, Laparoscopic surgery, Laparoscopy, ARIA Charts, Economic development


Various nutritional assessment tools are available to assess adult undernutrition, but few are practical in poorly served areas of low-income countries.

Concepts: Nutrition, Africa, Poverty, Food, Malnutrition, World Bank, Starvation, Famine