Mobile Social Media for Preventing the Ebola Virus Disease Spread in Liberia and Nigeria: A Comparative Analysis

  • Emmanuel Eilu
  • John Sören Pettersson
Part of the EAI/Springer Innovations in Communication and Computing book series (EAISICC)


The aftermath of the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) crisis in West Africa in 2014 was horrific. The EVD epidemic claimed 11,315 lives and had almost a 40 per cent killing rate. The EVD had huge negative effects on social, economic and political fronts of the four most affected countries Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Nigeria. Liberia was the country worst hit and Nigeria was the least affected among them. In both countries, social media was widely used to provide public health messaging and behavioural change guidance to the population on how to avoid getting infected with the deadly EVD. However, while the use of social media significantly reduced the spread of Ebola in Nigeria by 75 per cent, it was not effective in reducing the spread of the EVD in Liberia. In this paper, we reflect factors responsible for the ineffective use of mobile social media in aiding social behavioural change guidance towards the prevention of EVD spread in Liberia and the successful use of mobile social media in doing the same in Nigeria. We further reflect on the definition of ‘mobile social media’.



We express our thanks to student interns Kai Langenekert and Fabian Jaskotka who checked the references and formatted the document.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Emmanuel Eilu
    • 1
  • John Sören Pettersson
    • 2
  1. 1.Uganda Christian University, Mbale University CollegeMbaleUganda
  2. 2.Karlstad UniversityKarlstadSweden

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