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The Integrated Spatial Pattern of Child Mortality during the 2012−2016 Drought in La Guajira, Colombia

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Diana Maria Contreras Mojica



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


The El Niño phenomenon in 2012 triggered a drought in La Guajira, Colombia that extended until 2016. In this period, the average child mortality rate in the area reached 23.4 out of 1000. The aim of this paper is to identify the integrated spatial pattern (ISP) of a single indicator in this case; child mortality. At the same time, the ISP identifies causes and priority areas for action. The socio-economic vulnerability (SEV) variables and spatial indicators related to child mortality were selected from the literature review and through meetings, workshops, and interviews with the affected community during fieldwork. Using correlation analysis and stepwise regression, the SEV variables with more accountability in child mortality during the drought were identified: Households with a monthly income of less than 100 USD, the number of people older than 65, and the number of people younger than 5 years old. Allocating weights to the SEV variables according to their degree of accountability in child mortality, its ISP has been identified. The far north of La Guajira was detected as the area most affected by child mortality and was, therefore, the priority zone for implementing actions focused on generating new sources of income.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Contreras D

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Sustainability

Year: 2019

Volume: 11

Issue: 24

Online publication date: 15/12/2019

Acceptance date: 12/12/2019

Date deposited: 12/12/2019

ISSN (electronic): 2071-1050

Publisher: MDPI


DOI: 10.3390/su11247190


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