Wednesday, August 27, 2014

"Can Ebola be stopped? 14th century Venice could teach us something"

Return with us now to what Barbara Tuchman called "The Calamitous 14th Century" .
From City AM:
In 1348, the Black Death arrived in Venice from Sicily. From there it travelled across most of Europe and ultimately killed off an estimated 45 per cent of the population. 
Spread by a simple flea bite, it turned out to be one of the most devastating pandemics in human history.
14th century Venice
Venice, the hub of many trade routes into central Europe, became a prime location for transmission of the disease as people from all countries in the region met and exchanged goods. Yet Venice continued to flourish while much of the rest of Italy and the surrounding nations fell hard at the hands of the disease.
Why? “Resilience management”, according to Dr Igor Linkov of the US Army Engineer Research and Development Centre. 
In an article published in the Journal Environment Systems and Decisions, he argues the way in which they managed physical movement and social interactions proved an effective means of containing the disease, and that emulating their activities in a modern-day setting could provide a long-term solution to the Ebola epidemic currently spreading through West Africa....MORE