Conference 2021: Covid-themed Discussion Meeting - report

One of the keynote meetings at the RSS 2021 Conference was an extended Discussion Meeting, chaired by RSS president Sylvia Richardson, in which three papers relating to the Covid-19 pandemic were presented.

The first speaker, Guy Nason, shared his work on quantifying the economic response to the pandemic mitigations and death rates via forecasting Purchasing Managers' Indices using generalised network autoregressive models.

The second paper by Qingyuan Zhao and colleagues, on the analysis conducted in the first few weeks of the pandemic, presented the initial research questions that arose after the virus was first detected in Wuhan in 2019. The study re-analysed two highly cited papers from the first few weeks of the pandemic and flagged several limitations and lessons learnt.

Finally, the third study by Feiyu Jiang on modelling the infection trajectory of the pandemic using linear quantile regression, outlined how Covid cases can be forecasted using quantile based models. Feiyu’s talk concluded with suggestions for future work.  

The meeting continued with two invited discussants sharing their opinions and advice on the three presented papers. Some points raised focused on asymptomatic infections, whether these were accounted for and how this could impact methodology, as well as being innovative, and balancing noise vs signal when analysing Covid-19 data. The next part of the session encouraged the audience to actively contribute and comment on the three studies.

Read more about the RSS 2021 Conference.

Celina Gehringer is a PhD researcher at the School of Health Sciences, University of Manchester.

The detailed discussion and authors’ replies will be published along with the papers, in the relevant RSS Journal series.

Read more about the authors and papers being discussed, and download preprints, on our Discussion Paper Meetings page.

A recording of the Discussion Meeting will be available on the RSS YouTube channel in due course.


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