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Zika Outbreak of 2016: Insights from Twitter

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Wasim Ahmed



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of a conference proceedings (inc. abstract) that has been published in its final definitive form by Springer, Cham, 2020.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


An outbreak of the Zika virus in 2016 caused great concern amongthe general public and generated a burst of tweets. The aim of this study was todevelop a better understanding of the types of discussions taking place. Tweetswere retrieved from the peak of the Zika outbreak (as identified by GoogleTrends). Tweets were then filtered and entered in NVivo to be analysed usingthematic analysis. It was found that tweets on Zika revolved around seven keythemes: pregnancy, travel and the Olympics, mosquitoes and conspiracy, healthorganisations, health information, travel and tracking, and general discussionsaround Zika. Our results are likely to be of interest to public healthorganisations disseminating information related to future outbreaks of Zika andwe develop a set of preliminary recommendations for health authorities.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Ahmed W, Bath PA, Sbaffi L, Demartini G

Editor(s): Meiselwitz G.

Publication type: Conference Proceedings (inc. Abstract)

Publication status: Published

Conference Name: Social Computing and Social Media. Participation, User Experience, Consumer Experience, and Applications of Social Computing. HCII 2020

Year of Conference: 2020

Pages: 447-458

Online publication date: 10/07/2020

Acceptance date: 05/03/2020

Date deposited: 13/03/2020

ISSN: 0302-9743

Publisher: Springer, Cham


DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-49576-3_32

Library holdings: Search Newcastle University Library for this item

Series Title: Lecture Notes in Computer Science

ISBN: 9783030495756