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In International journal of environmental research and public health ; h5-index 73.0

Youths experiencing homelessness (YEH) often cycle between various sheltering locations including spending nights on the streets, in shelters and with others. Few studies have explored the patterns of daily sheltering over time. A total of 66 participants completed 724 ecological momentary assessments that assessed daily sleeping arrangements. Analyses applied a hypothesis-generating machine learning algorithm (component-wise gradient boosting) to build interpretable models that would select only the best predictors of daily sheltering from a large set of 92 variables while accounting for the correlated nature of the data. Sheltering was examined as a three-category outcome comparing nights spent literally homeless, unstably housed or at a shelter. The final model retained 15 predictors. These predictors included (among others) specific stressors (e.g., not having a place to stay, parenting and hunger), discrimination (by a friend or nonspecified other; due to race or homelessness), being arrested and synthetic cannabinoids use (a.k.a., "kush"). The final model demonstrated success in classifying the categorical outcome. These results have implications for developing just-in-time adaptive interventions for improving the lives of YEH.

Suchting Robert, Businelle Michael S, Hwang Stephen W, Padhye Nikhil S, Yang Yijiong, Santa Maria Diane M


daily sleeping arrangement, data science, electronic momentary assessment, machine learning, youth experiencing homelessness