Vol. 25 No. 1 (2021)
Research Reports

Covid-19 resilience in Mongolian pastoralist communities

Troy Sternberg
University of Oxford
B Batbuyan
Center for Nomadic Pastoralism Studies, Ulaan Baatar, Mongolia
Bolor-Erdene Battsengel
Chairwoman, Communication and Information Technology Authority Government of Mongolia Ulaan Baatar, Mongolia
Enkhbat Sainbayar
Mongolian Sustainable Agriculture Research and Development NGO Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia

Published 2021-05-12

How to Cite

Sternberg, T., Batbuyan, B., Battsengel, B.-E., & Sainbayar, E. (2021). Covid-19 resilience in Mongolian pastoralist communities. Nomadic Peoples, 25(1). https://doi.org/10.3197/np.2021.250117

Abstract

Covid-19 presents risks in pastoral communities as herders are isolated, have limited health care access, travel distances and interact with diverse publics. Including mobile people in Covid-19 planning and response presents a unique challenge for governments. Here we examine Covid-19 experience in Mongolian pastoral communities where interviews identified strong support for pandemic control efforts. Restrictive measures were followed and herders reported no local cases. A cohesive national spirit and clear messaging from the Health Ministry contributed to initial success. This enabled herders to continue customary practices and find positive perspectives during the pandemic.

References

  1. Brand, S., R. Aziza, I. Kombe, C. Agoti, J. Hilton, K. Rock, A. Parisi, D. Nokes, M. Keeling and E. Barasa. 2020. ‘Forecasting the scale of the COVID-19 epidemic in Kenya’. MedRxiv. https://doi.org/10.1101/2020.04.09.20059865
  2. Devi, S. 2020. ‘Infectious diseases upsurge in Mongolia’. The Lancet Infectious Diseases 20 (3): 289.
  3. Duclos, D. and J. Palmer. 2020. ‘COVID-19 in the Context of Forced Displacement: Perspectives from the Middle East and East Africa. Social Science in Humanitarian Action Platform (SSHAP)’. www.socialscienceinaction.org/resources/background- paper-covid-19-and-forced-displacement-in-the-middle-east-and-east-africa/
  4. Erkhembayar, R., E. Dickinson, D. Badarch, I. Narula, G. Thomas, C. Ochir and S. Manaseki-Holland. 2020. ‘Early policy actions and emergency response to the COVID-19 pandemic in Mongolia: experiences and challenges’. The Lancet Global Health 8 (9): e1234-e1241
  5. Global Health Security. 2020. 2019 Global Health Security Index. www.ghsindex.org/ Global News. 2020. ‘Teenager dies of bubonic plague after eating marmot in Mongolia’. globalnews.ca/news/7183608/bubonic-plague-death-marmot/
  6. Griffith, E., L. Pius, P. Manzano and C. Jost. 2020. ‘COVID-19 in pastoral contexts in the greater Horn of Africa: Implications and recommendations’. Pastoralism 10 (1): 1–12.
  7. Johns Hopkins University. 2020. Mongolia. Coronavirus Research Centre. coronavirus. jhu. edu/region/mongolia
  8. National Statistics Office. 2020. Population and Housing. Census 2020. Government of Mongolia, Ulaan Baatar
  9. Rahmanian, M. and N. Naghizadeh. 2020. ‘COVID-19 places Iran’s nomadic pastoral- ists at a crossroads’. Agriculture and Human Values 37: 599–601. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10460-020-10093-x
  10. Simula, G., T. Farinella, N. Maru, T. Mohamed, M. Taye and P. Tsering. 2020. ‘COVID- 19 and pastoralism: reflections from three continents’. Journal of Peasant Studies. https://doi.org/10.1080/03066150.2020.1808969
  11. Yousuf, A., S. Arifin, R. Musa and M. Isa. 2020. ‘Prevention and control of COVID-19 in pastoral community through One Health Approach’. One Health. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.onehlt.2020.100181