CDC/ATSDR SVI: Publications & Use Cases

CDC/ATSDR SVI Utilization and Implementation Tool (SUIT)

The CDC/ATSDR SVI Utilization and Implementation Tool (SUIT) below is a database of scientific journal articles that feature the CDC/ATSDR Social Vulnerability Index (CDC/ATSDR SVI). SUIT offers examples of how the CDC/ATSDR SVI is used in research, covering a range of topics that include disaster management, community health, resource allocation, and medical treatment outcomes.

About SUIT

The SUIT was developed by extracting articles from a wide array of scientific journal databases that included Medline, Embase, Global Health, PsychInfo, The Cochrane Library, CINAHL, Scopus, and ProQuest. Article inclusion criteria consisted of (1) articles published from Jan 2015 to Feb 2023 and (2) articles that used CDC/ATSDR SVI in a research or analytic capacity, which excluded editorials and articles that reference only the CDC/ATSDR SVI.

We will review articles to add to the database periodically, and despite the thorough review, some papers may have been missed. If you believe your paper should be included, please email

Using the SUIT Database

Use the search bar at the top to find articles using keywords compiled from the abstracts. The advanced search option allows users to search by specific combinations of these keywords. Click on “Columns” to include/exclude columns, “Filters” to filter through the articles, or “Density” to change the row height. Hover over the column headers to show more information about what the columns contain and click on the column headers to sort the articles by ascending or descending order. Lastly, if the text contained within the cell is too long to display, hover over the cell to display the full text.

Original CDC/ATSDR SVI Publication

The original Social Vulnerability Index article describes how and why the initial CDC/ATSDR SVI was created. It was published in 2011 and was not included in the SUIT database. However, it is an important CDC/ATSDR SVI article and is included here:

Publications – SUIT Database


National Environmental Public Health Tracking Network Data Explorer using SVI within the Populations and Vulnerabilities content

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Applied Science Program Grant From Space to Front Porch: Connecting Earth Observations to Health Outcomes with an Environmental Exposure Modeling System

The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences – COVID-19 Pandemic Vulnerability Index (PVI) incorporating SVI into the PVI model

Surgo Ventures/Ariadne Labs – Vaccine Allocation Planner for COVID-19 using SVI as an Allocation Approach

Surgo Ventures – The United States COVID-19 Community Vulnerability Index 

Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Georgia Tech, and Boston Medical Center’s COVID-19 Outbreak Detection Tool including the SVI

Feature and Map Services for the 2018 and 2020 CDC/ATSDR SVI hosted on ESRI: ArcGIS Living Atlas of the World

Esri – Tutorial on Location Allocation for COVID-19 Response (video)

Save the Children U.S. Programs/Natural Hazards Center at University of Colorado-Boulder – An Evaluation of State Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster’s (VOAD) Capacities to Protect Children in Emergencies Project using the 2016 SVI

Habitat for Humanity Social Vulnerability & Distressed Communities Indexes using the SVI

Catholic Charities USA Disaster Vulnerability Map using the CDC SVI to assess hazard risk

North Carolina Institute for Public Health at the UNC Gillings School of Global Health and the Risk Management section of North Carolina Department of Public Safety used the CDC SVI methodology to create the North Carolina Social Vulnerability Index Tool

Wisconsin Department of Health Services – Wisconsin Flood Risk Mapping Application incorporating the SVI as an Operational Layer

BRACE – Illinois: Building Resilience Against Climate Effects using the SVI to identify vulnerable communities in Illinois

Vermont Department of Health created the Vermont Social Vulnerability Index by adapting the CDC/ATSDR methodology

King County, WA used the 2018 SVI to create their CDC Social Vulnerability Index Condition for King County

The Best Friends Network Human & Pet Vulnerability Study using the CDC SVI to determine vulnerability

U.S. Diabetes Surveillance System includes the CDC/ATSDR SVI in the Social Determinants of Health information

Georgia Department of Public Health’s Online Analytical Statistical Information System (OASIS) platform uses the SVI to incorporate socioeconomic vulnerability (SES) into web queries, trends, and maps

White Papers

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention/Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (CDC/ATSDR). A Validity Assessment of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention/Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry Social Vulnerability Index (CDC/ATSDR SVI) [PDF – 960 KB]. Atlanta (GA): U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, CDC/ATSDR; May 09, 2024.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Planning for an Emergency: Strategies for Identifying and Engaging At-Risk Groups. A guidance document for Emergency Managers: First edition. Atlanta (GA): CDC; 2015.

Flanagan B, Hallisey E, Sharpe JD, Mertzlufft CE, Grossman M. On the validity of validation: A commentary on Rufat, Tate, Emrich, and Antolini’s “How valid are social vulnerability models?” Annals of the American Association of Geographers. 2021;111:4, em-i-em-vi. DOI: 10.1080/24694452.2020.1857220

Tarling, H.A. (2017). Comparative Analysis of Social Vulnerability Indices: CDC’s SVI and SoVI.® Lund University Master’s Thesis.

Balbus, J., Crimmins, A., Gamble, J.L., Easterling, D.R., Kunkel, K.E., Saha, S, & Sarofim, M.C. (2016). The Impacts of Climate Change on Human Health in the United States: A Scientific Assessment (Ch. 1. Climate Change and Human Health & Ch. 9. Populations of Concern). U.S. Global Change Research Program, Washington, DC.

Nayanee G., Clavin, C.T., Petropoulos, Z.E., Mudd, A.B., Nek, R., & Tinkle, S.S. (2016). Case Studies of Community Resilience Policy. U.S. Department of Commerce, National Institute of Standards and Technology.

Hurst, H. (2015). Disaster Recovery Centers: Catchment Analysis. Technical Report. Federal Emergency Management Agency Recovery Directorate.

Vick, J., Thomas-Trudo, S., Cole, M., & Samuels, A.D. (Eds.). (2015). Health equity in Nashville. Metro Nashville Public Health Department Division of Epidemiology and Research and RWJF Center for Health Policy at Meharry Medical College.

Mukhopadhyay, S. (2013). Environmental Public Health Tracking ASTHO Fellowship Report. Tennessee Department of Health.

Questions or Comments? Contact the CDC/ATSDR SVI Coordinator (