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Material wealth in 3D: Mapping multiple paths to prosperity in low- and middle-income countries

Description

Material wealth is a key factor shaping human development and well-being. Every year, hundreds of studies in social science and policy fields assess material wealth in low- and middle-income countries

Material wealth is a key factor shaping human development and well-being. Every year, hundreds of studies in social science and policy fields assess material wealth in low- and middle-income countries assuming that there is a single dimension by which households can move from poverty to prosperity. However, a one-dimensional model may miss important kinds of prosperity, particularly in countries where traditional subsistence-based livelihoods coexist with modern cash economies. Using multiple correspondence analysis to analyze representative household data from six countries—Nepal, Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania and Guatemala—across three world regions, we identify a number of independent dimension of wealth, each with a clear link to locally relevant pathways to success in cash and agricultural economies. In all cases, the first dimension identified by this approach replicates standard one-dimensional estimates and captures success in cash economies. The novel dimensions we identify reflect success in different agricultural sectors and are independently associated with key benchmarks of food security and human growth, such as adult body mass index and child height. The multidimensional models of wealth we describe here provide new opportunities for examining the causes and consequences of wealth inequality that go beyond success in cash economies, for tracing the emergence of hybrid pathways to prosperity, and for assessing how these different pathways to economic success carry different health risks and social opportunities.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2017-09-08

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Economic and evolutionary hypotheses for cross-population variation in parochialism

Description

Human populations differ reliably in the degree to which people favor family, friends, and community members over strangers and outsiders. In the last decade, researchers have begun to propose several

Human populations differ reliably in the degree to which people favor family, friends, and community members over strangers and outsiders. In the last decade, researchers have begun to propose several economic and evolutionary hypotheses for these cross-population differences in parochialism. In this paper, we outline major current theories and review recent attempts to test them. We also discuss the key methodological challenges in assessing these diverse economic and evolutionary theories for cross-population differences in parochialism.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2013-09-11

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Genetic Population Structure Accounts for Contemporary Ecogeographic Patterns in Tropic and Subtropic-Dwelling Humans

Description

Contemporary human populations conform to ecogeographic predictions that animals will become more compact in cooler climates and less compact in warmer ones. However, it remains unclear to what extent this

Contemporary human populations conform to ecogeographic predictions that animals will become more compact in cooler climates and less compact in warmer ones. However, it remains unclear to what extent this pattern reflects plastic responses to current environments or genetic differences among populations. Analyzing anthropometric surveys of 232,684 children and adults from across 80 ethnolinguistic groups in sub-Saharan Africa, Asia and the Americas, we confirm that body surface-to-volume correlates with contemporary temperature at magnitudes found in more latitudinally diverse samples (Adj. R[superscript 2] = 0.14-0.28). However, far more variation in body surface-to-volume is attributable to genetic population structure (Adj. R[superscript 2] = 0.50-0.74). Moreover, genetic population structure accounts for nearly all of the observed relationship between contemporary temperature and body surface-to-volume among children and adults. Indeed, after controlling for population structure, contemporary temperature accounts for no more than 4% of the variance in body form in these groups. This effect of genetic affinity on body form is also independent of other ecological variables, such as dominant mode of subsistence and household wealth per capita. These findings suggest that the observed fit of human body surface-to-volume with current climate in this sample reflects relatively large effects of existing genetic population structure of contemporary humans compared to plastic response to current environments.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2015-03-27

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Longitudinal social networks impacts on weight and weight-related behaviors assessed using mobile-based ecological momentary assessments: Study Protocols for the SPARC study

Description

Background
The transition from the home to college is a phase in which emerging adults shift toward more unhealthy eating and physical activity patterns, higher body mass indices, thus increasing

Background
The transition from the home to college is a phase in which emerging adults shift toward more unhealthy eating and physical activity patterns, higher body mass indices, thus increasing risk of overweight/obesity. Currently, little is understood about how changing friendship networks shape weight gain behaviors. This paper describes the recruitment, data collection, and data analytic protocols for the SPARC (Social impact of Physical Activity and nutRition in College) study, a longitudinal examination of the mechanisms by which friends and friendship networks influence nutrition and physical activity behaviors and weight gain in the transition to college life.
Methods
The SPARC study aims to follow 1450 university freshmen from a large university over an academic year, collecting data on multiple aspects of friends and friendship networks. Integrating multiple types of data related to student lives, ecological momentary assessments (EMAs) are administered via a cell phone application, devilSPARC. EMAs collected in four 1-week periods (a total of 4 EMA waves) are integrated with linked data from web-based surveys and anthropometric measurements conducted at four times points (for a total of eight data collection periods including EMAs, separated by ~1 month). University databases will provide student card data, allowing integration of both time-dated data on food purchasing, use of physical activity venues, and geographical information system (GIS) locations of these activities relative to other students in their social networks.
Discussion
Findings are intended to guide the development of more effective interventions to enhance behaviors among college students that protect against weight gain during college.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2016-08-30

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Effectiveness of an integrated approach to reduce perinatal mortality: recent experiences from Matlab, Bangladesh

Description

Background
Improving perinatal health is the key to achieving the Millennium Development Goal for child survival. Recently, several reviews suggest that scaling up available effective perinatal interventions in an integrated

Background
Improving perinatal health is the key to achieving the Millennium Development Goal for child survival. Recently, several reviews suggest that scaling up available effective perinatal interventions in an integrated approach can substantially reduce the stillbirth and neonatal death rates worldwide. We evaluated the effect of packaged interventions given in pregnancy, delivery and post-partum periods through integration of community- and facility-based services on perinatal mortality.
Methods
This study took advantage of an ongoing health and demographic surveillance system (HDSS) and a new Maternal, Neonatal and Child Health (MNCH) Project initiated in 2007 in Matlab, Bangladesh in half (intervention area) of the HDSS area. In the other half, women received usual care through the government health system (comparison area). The MNCH Project strengthened ongoing maternal and child health services as well as added new services. The intervention followed a continuum of care model for pregnancy, intrapartum, and post-natal periods by improving established links between community- and facility-based services. With a separate pre-post samples design, we compared the perinatal mortality rates between two periods--before (2005-2006) and after (2008-2009) implementation of MNCH interventions. We also evaluated the difference-of-differences in perinatal mortality between intervention and comparison areas.
Results
Antenatal coverage, facility delivery and cesarean section rates were significantly higher in the post- intervention period in comparison with the period before intervention. In the intervention area, the odds of perinatal mortality decreased by 36% between the pre-intervention and post-intervention periods (odds ratio: 0.64; 95% confidence intervals: 0.52-0.78). The reduction in the intervention area was also significant relative to the reduction in the comparison area (OR 0.73, 95% CI: 0.56-0.95; P = 0.018).
Conclusion
The continuum of care approach provided through the integration of service delivery modes decreased the perinatal mortality rate within a short period of time. Further testing of this model is warranted within the government health system in Bangladesh and other low-income countries.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2011-12-10

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Association of antenatal care with facility delivery and perinatal survival – a population-based study in Bangladesh

Description

Background
Antenatal Care (ANC) during pregnancy can play an important role in the uptake of evidence-based services vital to the health of women and their infants. Studies report positive effects

Background
Antenatal Care (ANC) during pregnancy can play an important role in the uptake of evidence-based services vital to the health of women and their infants. Studies report positive effects of ANC on use of facility-based delivery and perinatal mortality. However, most existing studies are limited to cross-sectional surveys with long recall periods, and generally do not include population-based samples.
Methods
This study was conducted within the Health and Demographic Surveillance System (HDSS) of the International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh (icddr,b) in Matlab, Bangladesh. The HDSS area is divided into an icddr,b service area (SA) where women and children receive care from icddr,b health facilities, and a government SA where people receive care from government facilities. In 2007, a new Maternal, Neonatal, and Child Health (MNCH) program was initiated in the icddr,b SA that strengthened the ongoing maternal and child health services including ANC. We estimated the association of ANC with facility delivery and perinatal mortality using prospectively collected data from 2005 to 2009. Using a before-after study design, we also determined the role of ANC services on reduction of perinatal mortality between the periods before (2005 – 2006) and after (2008–2009) implementation of the MNCH program.
Results
Antenatal care visits were associated with increased facility-based delivery in the icddr,b and government SAs. In the icddr,b SA, the adjusted odds of perinatal mortality was about 2-times higher (odds ratio (OR) 1.91; 95% confidence intervals (CI): 1.50, 2.42) among women who received ≤1 ANC compared to women who received ≥3 ANC visits. No such association was observed in the government SA. Controlling for ANC visits substantially reduced the observed effect of the intervention on perinatal mortality (OR 0.64; 95% CI: 0.52, 0.78) to non-significance (OR 0.81; 95% CI: 0.65, 1.01), when comparing cohorts before and after the MNCH program initiation (Sobel test of mediation P < 0.001).
Conclusions
ANC visits are associated with increased uptake of facility-based delivery and improved perinatal survival in the icddr,b SA. Further testing of the icddr,b approach to simultaneously improving quality of ANC and facility delivery care is needed in the existing health system in Bangladesh and in other low-income countries to maximize health benefits to mothers and newborns.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2012-10-16

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Perinatal mortality associated with use of uterotonics outside of Comprehensive Emergency Obstetric and Neonatal Care: a cross-sectional study

Description

Background
Prior studies have shown that using uterotonics to augment or induce labor before arrival at comprehensive Emergency Obstetric and Neonatal Care (CEmONC) settings (henceforth, “outside uterotonics”) may contribute to

Background
Prior studies have shown that using uterotonics to augment or induce labor before arrival at comprehensive Emergency Obstetric and Neonatal Care (CEmONC) settings (henceforth, “outside uterotonics”) may contribute to perinatal mortality in low- and middle-income countries. We estimate its effect on perinatal mortality in rural Bangladesh.
Methods
Using hospital records (23986 singleton term births, Jan 1, 2009-Dec 31, 2015) from rural Bangladesh, we use a logistic regression model to estimate the increased risk of perinatal death from uterotonics administered outside a CEmONC facility.
Results
Among term births (≥37 weeks gestation), the risk of perinatal death adjusted for key confounders is significantly increased among women reporting uterotonic use outside of CEmONC (OR = 3 · 0, 95 % CI = 2 · 4,3 · 7). This increased risk is particularly high for fresh stillbirths (OR = 4 · 0, 95 % CI = 3 · 0,5 · 3) and intrapartum-related causes of early neonatal deaths (birth asphyxia) (OR = 3 · 1, 95 % CI = 2 · 2,4 · 5).
Conclusions
In this sample, outside uterotonic use was associated with substantially increased risk of fresh stillbirths, deaths due to birth asphyxia, and all perinatal deaths. In settings of high uterotonic use outside of controlled settings, substantial improvement in both stillbirth and early neonatal mortality may be made by reducing such use.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2016-10-06

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Institutions, Parasites and the Persistence of In-group Preferences

Description

Much research has established reliable cross-population differences in motivations to invest in one's in-group. We compare two current historical-evolutionary hypotheses for this variation based on (1) effective large-scale institutions and

Much research has established reliable cross-population differences in motivations to invest in one's in-group. We compare two current historical-evolutionary hypotheses for this variation based on (1) effective large-scale institutions and (2) pathogen threats by analyzing cross-national differences (N = 122) in in-group preferences measured in three ways. We find that the effectiveness of government institutions correlates with favoring in-group members, even when controlling for pathogen stress and world region, assessing reverse causality, and providing a check on endogeneity with an instrumental variable analysis. Conversely, pathogen stress shows inconsistent associations with in-group favoritism when controlling for government effectiveness. Moreover, pathogen stress shows little to no association with in-group favoritism within major world regions whereas government effectiveness does. These results suggest that variation in in-group preferences across contemporary nation-states is more consistent with a generalized response to institutions that meet basic needs rather than an evolved response dedicated to pathogens.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2013-05-21

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Estimating the absolute wealth of households

Description

Objective To estimate the absolute wealth of households using data from demographic and health surveys. Methods We developed a new metric, the absolute wealth estimate, based on the rank of

Objective To estimate the absolute wealth of households using data from demographic and health surveys. Methods We developed a new metric, the absolute wealth estimate, based on the rank of each surveyed household according to its material assets and the assumed shape of the distribution of wealth among surveyed households. Using data from 156 demographic and health surveys in 66 countries, we calculated absolute wealth estimates for households. We validated the method by comparing the proportion of households defined as poor using our estimates with published World Bank poverty headcounts. We also compared the accuracy of absolute versus relative wealth estimates for the prediction of anthropometric measures. Findings The median absolute wealth estimates of 1 403 186 households were 2056 international dollars per capita (interquartile range: 723-6103). The proportion of poor households based on absolute wealth estimates were strongly correlated with World Bank estimates of populations living on less than 2.00 United States dollars per capita per day (R-2=0.84). Absolute wealth estimates were better predictors of anthropometric measures than relative wealth indexes. Conclusion Absolute wealth estimates provide new opportuhities for comparative research to assess the effects of economic resources on health and human capital, as well as the long-term health consequences of economic change and inequality.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2015-07-01