Is Crowdsourcing a Reliable Method for Mass Data Acquisition? The Case of COVID-19 Spread in Greece During Spring 2020
ISPRS International Journal of Geo-Information
We present a GIS-based crowdsourcing application that was launched soon after the first COVID-19 cases had been recorded in Greece, motivated by the need for fast, location-wise data acquisition regarding COVID-19 disease spread during spring 2020, due to limited testing. A single question was posted through a web App, to which the anonymous participants subjectively answered whether or not they had experienced any COVID-19 disease symptoms. Our main goal was to locate geographical areas with
... creased number of people feeling the symptoms and to determine any temporal changes in the statistics of the survey entries. It was found that the application was rapidly disseminated to the entire Greek territory via social media, having, thus, a great public reception. The higher percentages of participants experiencing symptoms coincided geographically with the highly populated urban areas, having also increased numbers of confirmed cases, while temporal variations were detected that accorded with the restrictions of activities. This application demonstrates that health systems can use crowdsourcing applications that assure anonymity, as an alternative to tracing apps, to identify possible hot spots and to reach and warn the public within a short time interval, increasing at the same time their situational awareness. However, a continuous reminder for participation should be scheduled.