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Spatial inequality, infectious diseases and disease control

Spatial inequality

(Picture by fxxu via pixabay.com, CC0 license)

Spatial inequality is the unequal distribution of resources and services across different areas or locations, such as healthcare, welfare, public services, household income and infrastructures. The distribution of such characteristics over space can be described in terms of proximity, distance, clustering and concentration. Spatial inequality can be visible in the urban/rural divide, between states or nations, or between more and less deprived areas within the same geographical unit.

Spatial inequalities are associated with health and social inequalities and affect population health. Understanding the extent and nature of differences between places, and their trends, can support the development of policies, strategies and interventions that have an impact on morbidity and mortality of different diseases.

As most of the world’s fastest growing cities are in Asia and Africa, the way infectious diseases coexist and interact with evolving rural and urban spaces, as well as with interfaces between human and wildlife, is increasingly complex.  

This collection focuses on emerging infectious diseases in humans and animals, including the impact of antimicrobial resistance, and brings together research that investigates the relationship between spatial inequalities of all kinds and the impact and prevalence of these infectious diseases. This collection will also welcome papers that seek solutions towards disease control across areas with particularly unequal distribution of resources and opportunities. 

The following journals are accepting submissions to the series:

Annals of Clinical Microbiology and Antimicrobials
Health Research Policy and Systems
Human Resources for Health
Globalization and Health
Gut Pathogens
Infectious Diseases of Poverty
International Journal of Health Geographics
Malaria Journal
One Health Outlook
Open Geospatial Data, Software and Standards
Parasites & Vectors

Manuscripts should be formatted according to the individual journals instructions for authors and submitted via the online submission system. Please indicate clearly in the title page that the manuscript is to be considered for the thematic series 'Spatial inequality, infectious diseases and disease control'. 

Manuscripts will be peer-reviewed independently by the respective journal. Accepted articles will be published online on a continuous basis.

Pre-submission enquiries are welcome. If you have questions before submitting your manuscript, please contact us.

Further references

The hidden burden of measles in Ethiopia: how distance to hospital shapes the disease mortality rate

Investigating spillover of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis from a prison: a spatial and molecular epidemiological analysis

Spatial epidemiology and infectious diseases - an article collection in BMC Medicine

Deprived Neighbourhoods and Spatial Inequalities in England

OECD - Spatial inequalities: across states or between rural and urban areas?

Spatial inequality and Development: An Overview of UNU-WIDER Project

Deadline for submissions: 28th February 2020.

Fees and funding

BMC and SpringerOpen Membership program

List of research funders and institutions worldwide that fund open access article-processing charges (APCs). 


  1. The social determinants of health (SDHs) condition disease distribution and the ways they are handled. Socio-economic inequalities are closely linked to the occurrence of neglected tropical diseases, but empir...

    Authors: María del Pilar Fernández, María Sol Gaspe and Ricardo E. Gürtler

    Citation: Parasites & Vectors 2019 12:184

    Content type: Research

    Published on: