International Projects

1. Identifying the barriers to using geospatial approach as a decision making tool for health policy in developing countries
This paper examines the role of GIS and spatial tools for public health decision-making in Bangladesh. The study was conducted based on a three week field survey and in-depth interviews of public health officials, researchers, and academics to understand the current usage of spatial tools in the health sector and some of the barriers towards scaling the use of GIS as a decision-making tool in the context of Bangladesh. I assisted in creating the survey instrument, identified the key experts using snowball sampling and conducted interviews and paper and pencil survey with over 75 respondents.

Dohyeong Kim, Malabika Sarkar, Priyanka Vyas, “Role of spatial tools for the purpose of public health decision-making in Bangladesh” — published at the Journal of Health, Population, and Nutrition, 2016 DOI: 10.1186/s41043-016-0045-1. Funded by the School of Economic, Political, and Policy Sciences Advisory Council – Amount $5000


This map was on the wall of the health care center, showing the high risk areas of Malaria and educating women on maternal and child health issues through visual aid

2. A content analysis approach to identify causes of construction related accidents in the Arabian Gulf Region
his study investigates the issues of construction safety of workers in the context of Gulf region by examining the causes of fall and struck by accidents. The study uses accident records from construction firm and other accident reports to analyze the factors associated with accidents using content analysis approach. I conducted content analysis using Nvivo software and analyzed accident records from policy and company sources. This paper was published in the Journal of Applied Ergonomics.
Simon Fass, Divakaran Lal, Rami Youssef, Priyanka Vyas, “Understanding the causes of Fall and Struck-by related incidents: What differentiates Construction Safety in the Arabian Gulf Region?”  — Journal of Applied Ergonomics2016 DOI:



3. Geospatial data for health for Low and Middle Income Countries
As a part of the Center for Geospatial Research in Global Health Policy, I was involved in assimilating a set of available geospatial data sets for developing countries. We assembled existing data sources and developed a web-based visualization system on a portal through which researchers could select countries and time period for which geospatial health data sets were available. This helps researchers identify specific locations with rich spatial data and also gaps in available data. Below are some examples.

Health and GIS datasets for Global Health Researchers:

Interested in finding a health and a GIS dataset for global health research?  Below are some web-maps prepared for the Center for Geospatial Research for Global Health Policy to assist researchers. Click on any icon to find out about the data for that location.

Countries for which Demographic and Health Surveys have been conducted, based on the number of years for which survey is available and the countries for which most recent survey period is available. To learn more, click on any location symbol on the map

Site Locations for the Health And Demographic Surveillance System maintained by the INDEPTH NETWORK based on the population covered. To learn more, click on a location symbol of your choice.

Countries with spatial data available in the Humanitarian Data Exchange Repository. Find out more by clicking on the location symbol of your choice.