I am complex systems scientist and the Managing Director of Pathogen Surveillance at the Rockefeller Foundation. In this capacity, I'm working as a member of the Pandemic Prevention Institute to build an equitable, ethical, and globally representative surveillance system that empowers communities to end this pandemic and prevent another. Outside of the Rockefeller Foundation, I am an Affiliate Assistant Professor in the Network Science Institute at Northeastern University, where I direct the Emergent Epidemics Lab, an External Faculty member at both the Santa Fe Institute and the Vermont Complex Systems Center, and a Co-Founder of Global.health.
If you’re interested in learning more about our work, you can find full-text versions of our articles and my current curriculum vitae. Lastly, for those interested in Big Data, read my philosophy here.
Affiliate Assistant Professor, Northeastern University
External Faculty, Santa Fe Institute
External Faculty, Vermont Complex Systems Center
News10/21/21: “The reason it didn’t is that the community and public health officials responded decisively and leveraged the tools we know work: masking, quarantine, and testing to bring this under control.” I spoke with Kay Lazar at the Boston Globe about how Provincetown, MA USA avoided an even larger super-spreading event.
09/14/21: “Those organizational patterns have really profound implications on how COVID will spread.” I spoke with Viviane Callier writing for Scientific American about a new paper in Nature predicting movement within cities using a simple, mathematical model and what the results might mean for disease forecasting.
09/13/21: “We don’t want anyone to die from a vaccine-preventable disease.” I spoke with Jon Kamp at the Wall Street Journal about the high risk of the Delta variant in unvaccinated individuals. We need testing, masking, and a plan to vaccinate 5-11 yo’s. What’s your state done to prepare?
09/09/21: Can we use football to explain the base rate fallacy and #COVID19 breakthrough infections? Here's David Bienick and me giving it our best shot on WCVB Boston.
08/30/21: “For everything we know about this virus, we can still fill up books with things we don’t have the answers for yet. That causes a lot of uncertainty in the forecasts.” I spoke with Martin Finucane at the Boston Globe about what the Delta variant means for our COVID-19 forecasting models.
08/23/21: As an Omidyar Postdoctoral Fellow at the Santa Fe Institute, I began studying the shape of epidemics. What causes some outbreaks to linger, while others burn out quickly? Why are some pathogens easier to predict and can we do anything to improve predictions? Recently, I spoke Faye Flam on the podcast Follow The Science for an episode called, "Why is the Pandemic So Hard to Predict?"
08/16/21: “I think what was more surprising was how long the narrative persisted that children weren’t transmitting SARS-CoV-2.” I spoke to Michele Cohen Marill writing for WebMD about a new study published in JAMA Pediatrics that clearly shows the important epidemiological contribution of children during COVID-19 outbreaks.
08/12/21: “'My phone can tell me if I need to carry an umbrella, and I want it to tell me if I should put a mask on,' Scarpino said. 'I’d like to have that for the rest of my life.'” I spoke to Ed Yong at The Atlantic about how the pandemic might end now that we're dealing with the Delta variant.
08/10/21: I joined WBUR's Morning Edition to discuss rising COVID-19 case rates in Massachusetts.
08/06/21: Our NSF Rules of Life: Emergent Networks proposal, "Does re-wilding lead to re-wiring of gene expression and species interaction networks?" has been funded for four years. Unfortunately, my position at The Rockefeller Foundation won't allow me to serve as Co-PI on this award, but I plan to stay actively involved in the project as a volunteer.
08/03/21: I joined Baystate Business on Bloomberg Radio to discuss vaccines and the Delta variant.
08/02/21: “What’s abundantly clear is that the vaccines are working. There were only a few hospitalizations and there were no deaths. In addition, the outbreak came under control quickly,” I spoke with Travis Andersen and his colleagues for two pieces at the Boston Globe about the COVID-19 cluster in Provincetown, MA. You can read them here and here.
07/30/21: “One thing is for sure, he said. The vaccines are still highly effective.” I spoke with Sabri Ben-Achour on Marketplace about why COVID-19 vaccination is more important than ever.
07/27/21: “It definitely does seem like mostly just losers,” I spoke to Rob Csernyik at Maisonneuve about the epidemic of bed bugs across the US and Canada.
07/26/21: “As long as the virus is circulating, with or without causing illness, it can change and mutate, including into new strains that may be even harder to control.” I spoke to Arielle Mitropoulos at ABC News about breakthrough COVID-19 infections.
07/25/21: “A critical mass of vaccinated individuals are selecting for variants that have increased transmissibility in vaccinated individuals.” Matt Stieb writing for New York Magazine discussed the Wired article I contributed to around the COVID-19 risk during the Tokyo Olympics.
07/25/21: “Right now — where cases are surging, [like in] P-town — masking, testing, and other precautions are key steps we must all take” I spoke to the Boston Globe about what precautions we need to take now that the COVID-19 Delta variant is common across the US.
07/22/21: “There are plenty of eco-evolutionary scenarios where this isn’t a traditional super-spreader event, but a ‘super-evolutionary event.’” I spoke to Adam Rogers at Wired about the risk the Tokyo Olympics poses to COVID-19 spread and variant emergence.
07/22/21: "‘Super-seeding’ drove UK spread of Alpha variant, study shows" Our new paper on the Alpha variant is out in Science and you can read more about the implications in coverage by the Financial Times.
07/19/21: Honored and humbled to announce that I'm joining the The Rockefeller Foundation as Managing Director of Pathogen Surveillance and a member of their new Pandemic Prevention Institute. I'm excited to work with the team as we build an equitable, ethical surveillance system that empowers communities to end this pandemic and prevent another.
07/16/21: “There will be pockets of individuals, sometimes entire towns and cities, that do not have enough immunity through vaccination or prior infection to prevent cases from growing into local surges." I spoke with Brianna Abbott at the Wallstreet Journal about the risk the Delta variant poses to under-vaccinated communities.
07/15/21: “In some ways, we’re only as strong as the weakest link when it comes to surveillance systems.” I spoke with Michele Cohen Marill writing for the Atlanta Magazine about what it means for the state of Georgia to lag behind the US National average for genome surveillance.
07/07/21: “Without such measures, we will have surges throughout the coming year and we risk the emergence of a SARS-CoV-2 strain that could have higher rates of vaccine breakthrough and/or severe cases in vaccinated individuals.” I spoke with Fiona Rutherford at Bloomberg about the need for improved genomic surveillance associated with vaccine breakthroughs.
07/02/21: I joined Bloomberg's Baystate Business radio broadcast to discuss COVID-19 variants of concern.
06/28/21: Our paper, "A review and agenda for integrated disease models including social and behavioural factors" is now published at Nature Human Behaviour.
06/21/21: Pre-Delta Variant, 60% coverage was a good goal, but we're now going to need upwards of 80 - 90% coverage by this fall to prevent another COVID-19 surge. I spoke to Boston News 25 about what this new VoC means for vaccination in MA.
06/20/21: We've made great progress, but, because of the COVID-19, Delta Variant, Gov. Baker's goal of ~60% vaccination coverage won't be enough. Israel is already there and is experiencing outbreaks in schools and rising case numbers. I spoke to John Hilliard at the Boston Globe about the need to, "pull out all the stops" & aim for >80% coverage of the entire state.
06/15/21: We have to pull out all the stops on vaccination in MA. Otherwise, the COVID-19, Delta Variant will put all our gains at risk. I spoke with Abbey Niezgoda at NBC10 Boston about the importance of Gov. Baker’s vaccine lottery announcement today.
06/15/21: When can we say that the COVID-19 pandemic is over? I spoke with Eva Botkin-Kowacki writing for News @ Northeastern about how the pandemic may progress over the next year.
06/14/21: At Global.health, We're humbled to now host >30 million individual-level COVID-19 records from ~130 countries. Read our newsletter to learn more about what we've been doing since our public launch.
06/11/21: I joined Bloomberg Radio in Boston to discuss what the new VoCs might mean for re-opening.
06/05/21: "'Maybe there's one church and everybody goes to the same church, or there's one grocery store and everybody goes to the same grocery store,'' Scarpino said. [COVID-19] goes from zero to a huge problem way faster than it often does in a city." I spoke to the Chattanooga Times Free Press about urban/rural differences in COVID-19 risk and how that interacts with vaccination coverage.
06/02/21: "What we really need is a broadly distributed, high-fidelity, always-on surveillance system that empowers local organizations." Along with Profs. Caitlin Rivers and Colin Carlson, I spoke with Maryn McKenna at Wired about how to build a representative, equitable global health surveillance network.
05/29/21: “We’ve gone through a whole year of trauma, and some people, even if they are vaccinated, aren’t going to be ready to take off their masks yet. We need to give those people space and time and process all this,” I spoke to John Hilliard at the Boston Globe about how “the word of the day is, ‘respectful,’."
05/29/21: “It’s really important that we celebrate what we achieved, but we focus on getting people vaccinated,” I spoke to John Hilliard at the Boston Globe about how vaccination has led us to an earlier-than-expected re-opening.
05/26/21: “Regardless of its origin, we desperately need investment in molecular surveillance, public health data systems, and epidemic forecasting.” I spoke to Travis Andersen at the Boston Globe about the President's call for an increased focus on COVID-19's origin.
05/25/21: “During the pandemic, allowing people to stay in their homes has saved lives.” Our Nature Communications paper on the epidemiological importance of halting evictions was cited in a New York Times editorial about the need for better tenant rights.
05/24/21: Work we did we collaborators at the University of Vermont on gene expression and dengue virus infection is now online at Nature Communications.
05/23/21: Data gaps are hampering the US situational awareness around COVID-19 variants. Moritz Kraemer and I spoke to Fiona Rutherford at Bloomberg about the dangerous mix of low vaccination rates and low-levels of genome sequencing in the US.
05/20/21: “Certainly, it’s because of the public health campaign of vaccinations and the 20 years of science that went into them.” I spoke to Martin Finucane at the Boston Globe about what the models are telling us is in store this summer for COVID-19.
05/18/21: How does COVID-19 relate to Canadian fur traders, ecological theory from the 1960s, and the kurtosis of your favorite social network's degree distribution? Find out later this afternoon at my public lecture, "Network Science Theory and COVID-19" during the Georgia Tech, QBioS Workshop on Epidemic Modeling. Watch here.
05/17/21: "There's no magic finish line, but as long as vaccinations continue, things can--and will--get a lot better than they are now." I joined Profs. Lauren Ancel Meyers and Marc Lipsitch in speaking with Geoffrey Brumfiel at NPR about moving beyond herd immunity in our quest to control COVID-19.
05/15/21: “The problem is how that got translated into a policy recommendation, which is to say that safety depends on how many people are vaccinated, what percentage, and how common COVID is,” I spoke to John Hilliard at the Boston Globe about the new CDC guidelines on indoor mask wearing.
05/13/21: "There isn’t a whole lot we can do about fighting misinformation or backing out its contribution to hesitancy, [but there is] a whole lot else we can do." I spoke to Alison Snyder and Sara Fischer at Axios about why fighting misinformation is just one small piece of addressing vaccine hesitancy.
05/13/21: Just in time for the CDC's announcement about masking, Profs. Ana Bento, Sarah Cobey, and I spoke to Adam Rogers at Wired about a cluster of asymptomatic COVID-19 cases in vaccinated Yankees. tldr- we need better surveillance and masking should be tied to prevalence.
05/13/21: "We label people as essential but don't give them the resources that they need." I spoke to ABC News about how outbreaks in food factories align with reports that workers were not given the proper means to protect themselves.
05/13/21: "What most of us want is a safe return to something that looks more normal. That to me means 80% to 85%, vaccination," I spoke to Maia Niguel Hoskin at Forbes about what school vaccination means for COVID-19 control.
05/07/21: “Perhaps even more importantly, many countries, e.g., India, Nepal, Thailand, are experiencing devastating outbreaks of COVID-19. We need to provide resource to those countries, to include vaccines, urgently.” I spoke to Travis Anderson at the Boston Globe about the need to support countries with vaccines.
05/06/21: I'm excited to join The Pricing Nerd and Prof. C. Brandon Ogbunu for a Clubhouse discussion about the future of epidemiology.
05/04/21: “We were headed in the direction of India and avoided it only because of the incredible vaccination campaigns in the US,” I spoke with Martin Finucane at the Boston Globe about evidence that vaccines are working and protected us from an even larger B117 surge.
05/03/21: "I was joking that you could offer to let the tourists cut the long lobster roll lines in Maine in the summer if they got vaccinated," I spoke with Jen Christensen at CNN about the need to get creative with how we take the vaccine to the people across the US.
05/02/21: “‘Breaking bread with vaccine’: Wayland mosque mounts local interfaith vaccination clinic” I spoke with John Hilliard at the Boston Globe about the kind of community engagement we need for COVID-19 vaccination!
04/30/21: “...it will be a few more weeks before those age groups have the same level of protection as older individuals...” I spoke with Arielle Mitropoulos and John Brownstein writing for ABC News about the risk of COVID-19 in younger adults. We're making progress, but not out-of-the-woods yet!
04/27/21: “The economic reopening plan should be more directly tied to benchmarks in vaccination coverage and case rates, as opposed to “ad hoc” dates. Scarpino said that the state needs to aim to vaccinate 75 percent to 80 percent of the population.” I spoke to Nik DeCosta-Klipa at Boston.com about the need for a more data-driven approach to relaxing COVID-19 restrictions.
04/26/21: “Right now, even after concerted efforts to increase sequencing capacity, only about 3% of the country’s positive COVID-19 samples were sequenced in early April. That’s not just 'unacceptable,'' but 'nearly worthless,'” My interview with State News on molecular surveillance for COVID-19 and other respiratory pathogens was featured on PBS News Hour.
04/23/21: “Grossly put, physicians treat the patient, and epidemiologists treat the population,” says Sam Scarpino, head of the Emergent Epidemics Lab at Northeastern University. “But for infectious diseases, the distinction between the patient and the population is often very blurry.” I spoke to Adam Rogers at Wired about whether the safety of an individual can really be separated from the safety of the population during epidemics.
04/23/21: “‘The tool we have to hold our lives together is high-resolution surveillance that allows us to respond quickly,’ he said, by surging vaccines to any variant hotspots detected.” I spoke to Marion Renault writing for STAT News about the need for high resolution COVID-19 surveillance & response.
04/22/21: “Pandemics emerge from this combination of bottom-up interactions and top-down forces regulating these interactions … These top-down forces are where we don’t have very good data systems – we don’t have a coordinated national response.” I spoke with Noah Haggerty at NU SCI MAGAZINE, Northeastern University's student-run science magazine, about the work we've done over the past 16 months on COVID-19.
04/22/21: “A week or two slower on vaccinations, and it would have been a completely different story,” I spoke with the Boston Globe about the encouraging signs in MA, but also how close we came to another COVID-19 surge.
04/20/21: “We’re not done. We’ve got to get the vaccine into people’s arms, and it’s going to get harder before it’s going to get better,” I spoke with the Boston Globe about the need to ensure we stay focused on vaccinating individuals before interest starts to wane.
04/18/21: "Scarpino, with Northeastern University’s Emergent Epidemics Lab, also believes the B.1.1.7 variant is a key driver of the growth in New England." I spoke with the Portland Press Herald about the rise in COVID-19 cases in younger adults.
04/15/21: Chia-Hung Yang successfully defended is PhD dissertation, becoming the first person to earn a PhD with our group!
04/15/21: Evictions increase COVID-19 transmission. Our team contributed to a large effort to better understand this issue, which is now published at Nature Communications.
04/15/21: I spoke to The Huntington News--Northeastern's independent, student-run newspaper, about our work at Global.health. You can read the interview here.
04/14/21: What is "herd immunity" and how will we know we've reached it? I spoke with Lucy Hicks at WebMD to unpack this surprisingly complex topic.
04/13/21: How do network scientists measure importance and what does that have to do with Norwegian Fairy Tales? Shara Shugars and I published an essay in Nature Physics exploring these questions and more.
04/12/21: Molecular networks clearly influence evolution. But, how might they evolve? New work led by Emergent Epidemics Lab PhD candidate Chia-Hung Yang is now posted as pre-print to the bioRxiv.
04/12/21: “We should have held a tranche of vaccines in reserve for surging to variants,” I spoke with Liz Goodwin at the Boston Globe about the need for better planning around our response to COVID-19 VoCs.
04/12/21: "What the herd immunity threshold is telling us is, 'How likely is it that a small number of cases will grow into a large number of cases?'" I spoke with Lucy Hicks at Medscape about what herd immunity really means.
04/08/21: I joined Bloomberg Radio to discuss the rise of COVID-19 variants of concern in MA.
04/07/21: "Vaccine Refusal May Put Herd Immunity At Risk, Researchers Warn." I spoke with Geoff Brumfiel at NPR about vaccine hesitancy and herd immunity.
04/07/21: “Given that we have failed to control COVID-19 using non-pharmaceutical interventions, our safe return to any sense of normalcy heavily rests on the vaccines,” I spoke with Travis Andersen at the Boston Globe voicing my support for Northeastern's decision to require COVID-19 vaccination for returning students.
04/07/21: With rising cases in younger age groups and MA lagging behind nationally, I'm calling for Gov. Baker to accelerate our vaccine timeline. Watch my interview with Abbey Niezgoda on NCB10 Boston to learn more.
04/07/21: "We need to take these variants incredibly seriously, much more seriously then we're doing now." I spoke with Dialynn Dwyer at Boston.com about the troubling news about a P.1-related super-spreading event on the Cape.
04/07/21: "There’s good evidence that what we’re doing now is not enough.” I spoke with David Heath at USA Today about the desperate need for better COVID-19 genomic surveillance in the US.
04/02/21: I joined ABC's Good Morning America to (briefly) talk about COVID-19 variants of concern.
04/02/21: “It looks to me like we’re very much entering into another surge,” I spoke with Martin Finucane at the Boston Globe about the risk that we're already experiencing a third surge of COVID-19.
04/01/21: "I think it’s probably better for us to think about a ‘we’re safe’ threshold, which is once you get, say, 80 percent of the population vaccinated.” I spoke with Eva Botkin-Kowacki writing for News @ Northeastern about herd immunity & the importance of vaccinating adolescents against COVID-19.
04/01/21: “We know that minority communities have a well-earned discomfort with the government because of decades and decades of racism,” I spoke with Jillian Kramer writing for Elemental about the challenges associated with COVID-19 vaccination in rural America.
03/31/21: "As a result we're at risk, entering another surge and delaying our safe return to normalcy." I spoke with John Brownstein writing for ABC News about the disturbing COVID-19 trends nationally and the need to follow public health advice about re-opening.
03/31/21: I joined Kerri Miller on Minnesota Public Radio for a live discussion on current COVID-19 trends in the US.
03/30/21: “We could see a trajectory where we won’t get back to normalcy for months.” I spoke with the Boston Globe about the need to heed CDC Director Walensky's warning about our current COVID-19 trajectory.
03/30/21: “It's very clear that half-measures don't work,” he said. “They just kind of maintain this persistent level of unpleasantness, like we never really get safe enough that we can do the fun things safely again.” I spoke with WEEI about how opening up too quickly actually delays a return to normalcy.
03/30/21: "This virus, he said, seemed uniquely equipped to 'break our mental models.'” A talk I gave on complex systems and COVID-19 was featured by Christopher Cox in The Atlantic.
03/30/21: “We are already entering another sharp rise,” I spoke to Courthouse News about the risk we're already in another COVID-19 surge.
03/26/21: “If we have another surge, which we may be entering right now, we will still have a lot of hospitalizations, we will still have a lot of deaths,” I spoke to Dasia Moore at the Boston Globe about the need to take this latest spike in COVID-19 more seriously.
03/26/21: I joined Bloomberg Radio to discuss the rising COVID-19 cases in New England.
03/26/21: “This [rise in COVID-19] is exactly the reason that so many of us were saying it was too soon to be relaxing measures,” I spoke to Martin Finucane at the Boston Globe about why we should be very concerned about rising case numbers in our state and nationally.
03/25/21: “Let’s just not tempt fate, let’s just get rid of this damned thing,” I spoke to Jon Kamp at the Wall Street Journal about the need to beat COVID-19 now.
03/25/21: “Absolutely, we should be concerned,” I spoke to the Boston Globe about rising COVID-19 cases in younger individuals and the risk of a fourth surge.
03/25/21: Why have new COVID cases stopped declining in MA? I spoke to Craig LeMoult at GBH about what the plateau in cases should mean for our re-opening plans.
03/25/21: Rates of COVID-19 are now highest in younger age groups. I spoke with David Bienick at WCVB Channel 5 about what the shifting age distribution in cases means about vaccination and re-opening.
03/24/21: “Small changes in the way the disease is actually spreading in the population, lead to wildly different possible trajectories.” I spoke to Sabri Ben-Achour at Marketplace about how understanding COVID-19 and herd immunity requires embracing complexity.
03/23/21: "Reopening now puts all of our gains at risk and may make it take longer for us to return to something that looks like normalcy." I spoke to Bob Oakes on WBUR's Morning Edition about the need for more caution around COVID-19 re-opening plans.
03/22/21: “The advice from public health experts is pretty clear and specific with respect to the governor’s plans around reopening,” said Samuel Scarpino, a Northeastern University epidemiologist. “And that’s that we’re moving too quickly.” I spoke with John Hilliard at the Boston Globe about the need for more caution as we start to re-open the state.
03/19/21: "The most likely explanation is the variant of concern, B.1.1.7," epidemiologist Sam Scarpino said. "This variant is more transmissible, it causes more infections and it's harder to control." I spoke with Abbey Niezgoda at NBC10 Boston about the risk of moving ahead with stage 4 re-opening.
03/18/21: “If we had just taken the measures that were working and left them in place for a little bit longer, we wouldn’t be having this conversation right now,” I spoke with Dasia Moore at the Boston Globe about the risk of a B.1.1.7-driven resurgence in MA.
03/17/21: “Pretty much across the board the distribution has been grossly unequal,” I spoke with Jessica Glenza at The Guardian US about the failure of private businesses to distribute COVID-19 vaccines.
03/15/21: "COVID-19 could have been fixed in 3-6 months. Don't be an asshole, don't do dumb shit, don't be selfish." -Robel Kassa speaking on the Important Not Important podcast about the work we've been doing on the Global.health project.
03/12/21: "Biden’s ‘no-fail mission’: preventing the next pandemic." I spoke with Michael Wilner at McClatchy about the need for bigger investment in pandemic preparedness and response.
03/11/21: What variables do we need to monitor on our Path to Normalcy? Forbes covered the work I did with Tableau for the COVID-19 data hub.
03/09/21: Excited to announce that Tableu's COVID-19 Data Hub is now live. I've worked with Tableau over the past year as one of the advisory board members for this project. You can read more about the work here.
03/08/21: Our paper on seeding of COVID-19 across Sub-Saharan Africa is now early online at The American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. Read it here.
03/06/21: “To put this in perspective, if our state had managed this pandemic more effectively and the result was a mortality rate at the national average, there might be 6,000 more people alive today in the state.” I spoke with the Boston Globe about what it means for our state to cross through 16,000 confirmed COVID-19 fatalities.
03/05/21: I joined Bloomberg radio to discuss the Governors re-opening plan for Massachusetts. tl;dr I think we're moving way too quickly and risks of being wrong about this are very high. Listen here.
03/04/21: I was honored to join the Trinity Challenge roundtable with TTC CEO Hala Audi, Dame Sally Davies, Karen DeSalvo (Chief Health Officer at Google), Angela Spatharou, (Partner at McKinsey & Company), and Vilas Dhar (President of The Patrick J. McGovern Foundation) to discuss the role of data in pandemic response. You can watch the recording here.
03/03/21: “Fewer people are getting tested for COVID-19, which is a problem, experts say." I spoke with Dasia Moore at the Boston Globe about the risks if testing rates fall off drastically.
03/02/21: “State officials offered leftover vaccines to civilians at a clinic for first responders, prompting questions." I spoke with Matt Stout at the Boston Globe about the need for more coordination around our vaccine rollout.
03/01/21: “My greatest fear is we will enter into another surge later this spring which will be completely unnecessary. We will have serious economic consequences which will cause a roll back of all the things we’ve been fighting for.” I spoke with Abbey Niezgoda on NBC10 Boston about the need to still take COVID-19 seriously.
02/28/21: “‘Charlie, you’re making a big mistake’: Experts criticize state’s Monday reopening." I spoke with John Hilliard at the Boston Globe about the dangers of relaxing COVID-19 measures too soon in our state.
02/24/21: For the past year, we've been building an open data platform for tracking epidemics and curating a global repository of COVID-19 cases. Today, with support from Google.org and the Rockefeller Foundation, I'm proud to introduce Global.health.
02/24/21: Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google and Alphabet, tweeted about the launch of our Google.org- and Rockefeller-backed data project, Global.health.
02/24/21: “Welcome to public health,” Scarpino told the producer sarcastically. Emily Arntsen wrote a fantastic piece about the launch of Global.health for News @ Northeastern!
02/24/21: “Scarpino hopes to eventually expand the COVID-19 database onto an adaptable platform to survey other diseases — especially the next emergent epidemic." I spoke with Amy Maxmen at Nature about our new massive data initiative, Global.health.
02/24/21: “Backed by Google, epidemiologists launch a sweeping Covid-19 data platform." Katie Palmer covered the launch of Global.health for Stat News.
02/24/21: "I'm pretty confident that vaccines interrupt transmission, but we don't have data to say that. By not having a clear answer to this, we perpetuate uncertainty. And that's not good for controlling the narrative around the vaccines." I spoke with Med Page Today about transmission blocking vaccines.
02/22/21: “'The risk that we would mismanage this, especially federally,' was clear early last spring." I spoke with Dasia Moore at the Boston Globe about what the forecasting models told us about COVID-19 deaths this time last year.
02/22/21: "‘We don’t have any good answers.’ Local leaders frustrated with Baker’s decision to stop sending doses to local vaccination sites." I spoke with the Boston Globe about Gov. Baker's decision to change how vaccines are distributed in MA.
02/18/21: 'I joined Prof. Jared Auclair who directs Northeastern's COVID-19 testing and genome sequencing operations on VICE News to discuss variants of concern and the desperate need for better molecular surveillance in the US.
02/16/21: 'It's like we're trying our best to help the virus': A fourth wave is looming if US fails to contain COVID-19 variants, experts say. I spoke with Karen Weintraub at USA Today about the need to take the new variants serious and aim for the elimination of COVID-19.
02/15/21: I joined WCVB for two interviews on the latest COVID-19 data in MA. You can watch them here and here .
02/14/21: "These individuals [funeral workers] are providing an essential service, which we know is under considerable stress due to COVID-19." I spoke with the Boston Globe about the need to follow the CDC guidelines and prioritize funeral workers for vaccination.
02/14/21: What does it mean that more cases of B.1.1.7 have been detected in MA? I spoke with the Boston Globe about how to interpret the new data on COVID-19 variants.
02/11/21: I joined data viz legend Andy Cotgreave on Tableau's If Data Could Talk to discuss COVID-19 vaccination and the many dashboards and visualizations that now exist to help us track its progress.
02/11/21: What does Gov. Baker's controversial plan to allow non-professional caregivers for individuals over 75 to get vaccinated mean for MA? I spoke with Dasia Moore at the Boston Globe about the need to focus on both increasing the speed/efficiency of vaccination and drastically improving equity..
02/08/21: We're relaxing too quickly in MA, putting all our gains at risk. I joined Bob Oakes on WBUR's morning edition to discuss why we need to be laser focused on driving down COVID-19 cases to zero and getting to a new normal.
02/06/21: “We’re standing at an inflection point,” said Sam Scarpino. Together with a number of experts--including Prof. Caitlin Rivers and Dr. Anthony Fauci--I spoke with Caroline Chen at ProPublica about, "Why Opening Restaurants Is Exactly What the Coronavirus Wants Us to Do."
02/05/21: “'There is very compelling circumstantial evidence that we may be seeing the benefits of the vaccine in certain areas, including long-term care,' said Samuel Scarpino." I spoke (albeit quite tentatively) with the Wall Street Journal about early evidence that vaccines may be impacting case counts in long-term-care facilities.
02/03/21: “Before COVID-19, there was Zika, Ebola, H1N1, H5N1, SARS, anthrax—not to mention seasonal influenza, or longstanding global threats like tuberculosis.” Everyone should read Adam Roger’s new piece in Wired on the need for a US disease forecasting center.
02/02/21: What's behind the current dip in COVID-19 cases? tl;dr - I don't think we know. I spoke with Dasia Moore at the Boston Globe about what we need to do now if we want a new normal this summer.
01/31/21: We're set to enter Phase II for vaccination in MA, but things are lagging behind here as compared to other states. I spoke to the Boston Globe about what we might encounter over the following weeks as vaccination ramps up.
01/28/21: Jordana Cepelewicz has written one of the most comprehensive pieces on modeling during COVID-19. I encourage you to read this fantastic article in Quanta Magazine.
01/27/21: After COVID, will the flu make a comeback?. I spoke Veronique Greenwood writing for Northeastern's Experience Magazine about what future influenza seasons may hold in store for us.
01/25/21: I formally joined Northeastern's Khoury College of Computer Sciences as an affiliated Assistant Professor. I'm excited to contribute to the research mission of the college and can now co-advise PhD students in computer science.
01/23/21: Even though things are improving, relaxing measures now sends the wrong message about how safe things are. I spoke Boston Globe about what the latest COVID-19 trends in MA show.
01/22/21: “Although I agree with the [governor] that the indicators are headed in a better direction, we are in a really precarious situation with respect to hospitalizations.” I spoke with the Boston Globe about why it's too soon for us to start relaxing COVID-19 measures.
01/20/21: Our pre-print on the spatial spread of B.1.1.7 in the UK pairing case, testing, genomic surveillance, and mobility is online at Virological.
01/19/21: Our paper using survey data from >300k individuals in the US showed that mask wear was associated with substantially lower epidemic risk is early online at The Lancet Digital Health.
01/19/21: We contributed an analysis of mobility data to a new pre-print on the beneficial effects of evicition moritoriums on COVID-19 transmission. You can read it on medRxiv.
01/18/21: A lot what we're experiencing now was tragically avoidable. I spoke with the Boston Herald on the grim forecasts for COVID-19 mortality.
01/16/21: "The uncertain pace of vaccine roll-out and the new, highly transmissible coronavirus variant confound projections." What can we expect in the coming weeks around COVID-19 vaccination? I spoke with the Boston Globe on the need for improved transparency and equity in vaccine delivery.
01/14/21: Our perspective on open data curation during COVID-19 is now published at Nature Computational Science .
01/13/21: "Why Is Massachusetts' Vaccine Rollout Lagging So Far Behind Its Neighbors?" Learn more in my interview on WGBH's Greater Boston.
01/13/21: If we're going to reach a "new normal" in time for the northern hemisphere summer, we'll need to layer in non-pharmaceutical interventions with the vaccines. Read my interview with the European Science Media Hub here.
01/11/21: Picture This: A Path to Normalcy. I had the privilege of helping an incredible team at Tableau put together a data sketch on what data we need to monitor on the path to normalcy for COVID-19. Watch it here.
01/11/21: "As we enter the vaccine era of COVID-19, it’s important to reflect on and learn from our successes and failures." With that goal in mind, I sat down with Tableau to discuss the path to normalcy.
01/11/21: Are you interested in advancing global public health data systems and responding to COVID-19? As a part of a large, international consortium, I'm hiring a senior data visualization and front-end engineer. The position will be based at Northeastern University's incredible new AI campus in Portland, Maine: The Roux Institute. Learn more and apply here.
01/05/21: “That’s why we need the kind of widespread genomic surveillance the U.K. has instead of constantly playing catch-up.” I spoke with News @ Northeastern on what we know, what we need to know, and what we need to do about the B.1.1.7 variant.
12/29/20: One bright spot this past year has been meeting and working with so many talented, dedicated journalists. At the very top of that list for me is Ed Yong at the Atlantic. I spoke with Ed for his latest piecee, "Where Year Two of the Pandemic Will Take Us".
12/24/20: COVID-19 has disproportionately affected communities-of-color as a *direct* result of racism and xenophobia. We must consider equity as a top priority when determining vaccine distribution schedules. I spoke with Deanna Pan at the Boston Globe on why vaccine equity is such a critically important issue.
12/22/20: I spoke with Abbey Niezgoda on NBC 10 Boston about why more aggressive actions were needed sooner to slow COVID-19, but that it's not to late to act now.
12/19/20: Our ineffective contact tracing and case investigation systems in the US means that we don't have a clear picture of what's safe and what's less safe during COVID-19. I spoke with Dasia Moore at the Boston Globe about what the science tells us regarding indoor dining and why we desperately need better data.
12/17/20: I joined WEEI's Gerry Callahan on his podcast to discuss why COVID-19 restrictions are warranted and what may be ahead of us in the coming weeks.
12/15/20: “I think the time to act was a month ago,” Scarpino told Jim Braude on Greater Boston.
12/14/20: I joined Bloomberg Radio in Boston to discuss what new COVID-19 restrictions might look like and the worrying trajectory that our state is on.
12/14/20: Massachusetts is almost certainly headed towards another lockdown. I explained why and what we can still do to NBC 10 Boston.
12/12/20: “The real concern is there might not be any options left except for a lockdown,” said Scarpino. I collaborated with Shirley Leung at the Boston Globe on what the rising COVID-19 positivity rates might mean for hospitalizations in MA.
12/09/20: What's going on with Rhode Island's really high COVID-19 rates? I spoke with Amy Harmon at the New York Times about why the state's small size and heavily urban population both skews the numbers and complicates the COVID-19 response.
12/09/20: What can we learn from the disturbing COVID-19 trends in CA and what steps are needed now to prevent similarly tragic situations across the US? I spoke with News @ Northeastern on what the CA lockdowns might foretell for the rest of the US.
12/09/20: What is "surveillance testing" and how often is testing required for a safe return to in-person education? I spoke with the Boston Globe about Newton's plan for testing and how other locations might be able to leverage test/trace/isolate to reach a new normal faster.
12/08/20: “Solving the equity problem also solves the COVID problem,” said Sam Scarpino I spoke with Kay Lazar at the Boston Globe on our desperate need for better, and more equitable, access to COVID-19 testing in MA and across the US.
12/08/20: I spoke with WGBH about why Gov. Baker's new COVID-19 restrictions don't go near far enough.
12/07/20: We've been on the same COVID-19 trajectory for months now and have failed to act. I spoke with WBUR on what we need to do now to prevent hospitals from being overwhelmed later this month.
12/02/20: "Our worry is that individuals both traveling and gathering with people who are not typically a part of their bubble will lead to an increase in cases as a result of Thanksgiving." I spoke with WBUR's Morning Edition on what we're watching for post Thanksgiving.
11/29/20: "My intuition is that there will be a noticeable increase in cases due to super-spreading events over Thanksgiving." I spoke with the Boston Globe on what epidemiologists will be watching for now that Thanksgiving is behind us.
11/28/20: The manuscript on environmental transmission of SARS-CoV-2 that I co-authored with Prof. C. Brandon Ogbunu's group at Yale is now published at Nature Scientific Reports. You can read an excellent description of the work and how we got there by Prof. Ogbunu on Medium.
11/28/20: Instead of trying, we decided testing was too expensive. Now that we've *seen* it working, we're still resigned to let COVID-19 ravage our communities. I spoke with the Boston Globe on how colleges and universities have shown that test/trace/isolate can control COVID-19 in the US.
11/25/20: "Vaccines can prevent symptoms, but some can also keep people from spreading infection. That’s critical, and no one knows if the new vaccines do it.” I spoke with Wired about how our work on whooping cough vaccination and epidemiology relates to COVID-19.
11/23/20: I joined Drs. Sara Del Valle (senior scientist and mathematical epidemiologist at Los Alamos National Laboratory) and David Scrase (New Mexico's Secretary of Health and Human Services), in a panel discussion hosted by Santa Fe Reporter journalist, Julia Goldberg, to discuss how New Mexico has responded to COVID-19. You can watch a recording of the session here. This event was a part of the annual, Journalism Under Fire conference.
11/21/20: "But if you imagine taking those effective vaccines and layering them with the tools we have, there’s no reason we couldn’t kind of enter a new normal exiting the winter.” I spoke with the Boston Globe on how we need to prepare for the vaccine era of COVID-19 and what has to happen for us to enter a new normal by this summer.
11/20/20: "We should've taken some proactive measures earlier to avoid this," Scarpino said. "My personal opinion is we should have paused indoor dining a few weeks ago." Watch my interview on rising COVID-19 numbers on NBC 10 Boston.
11/17/20: "What sets Christakis’s work apart is that it was written in real time by an expert who astutely shows how pandemics are as much about our societies, values, and leaders as they are about pathogens." Read my review of Apollo's Arrow by Christakis in Science.
11/13/20: "Public health officials fear evictions could worsen COVID-19 spike in Mass." I spoke with the Boston Globe on the need to protect tenants during COVID-19.
11/13/20: I spoke with Bloomberg radio on how we can avoid another lockdown and what the early vaccine results from Pfizer may mean.
11/13/20: "What Scarpino means is, the Pfizer vaccine might be good enough to start healing the world, but not good enough to finish the job." Read my interview with Wired on how we're going to need more than just the mRNA vaccine from Pfizer, even if it's 90% efficacious.
11/13/20: "In Europe, robust stimulus plans are softening the blow of wider lockdowns. The US has no such backstop." I spoke to the Boston Globe about the dangerous trajectory we're on in the USA and MA and how that compares to what we're seeing in Europe.
11/12/20: Our peer-reviewed essay on stochasticity and superspreading during COVID-19 is early online at PLoS Biology.
11/10/20: "There may be a COVID-19 vaccine by the end of the year, but 'normality' may not come until end of 2021." Read my interview with USA Today on the need to layer non-pharmaceutical interventions with vaccines to get to a new normal months faster than what can be done with vaccines alone.
11/04/20: I sat down with Prof. Dame Sally Davies--Master of Trinity College, Cambridge & head of the Trinity Challenge--to discuss the need for better data during pandemics. You can watch our conversation on You Tube.
11/04/20: Our paper on pandemic risk assessment that goes *beyond R0* is now published at the Journal of the Royal Society Interface. You can read it here.
11/02/20: Governor Baker's new COVID-19 restrictions don't focus on the right areas. You can read my interview with the Boston Globe here.
11/01/20: NU epidemiologist doesn’t believe Election Day processes will increase COVID-19 transmission. Watch my interview on why the elections this week should be relatively safe--so long as you wear a mask--on Boston News 25.
10/27/20: I joined Data Beers Brussels to talk about how COVID-19 is a complex system. You can watch the recording here.
10/25/20: Half of all COVID-19 cases go untraced in MA and we don't have a plan to address the rising surge. I spoke with John Hilliard for two articles in the Boston Globe: one on unknown sources of infection and the second on rising case numbers.
10/24/20: Winter will bring new COVID-19 challenges, but it does not have to bring an overwhelming surge. I spoke with Dasia Moore at the Boston Globe on what we might expect for COVID-19 this winter.
10/23/20: "The numbers don't look good," says Sam Scarpino, who directs the Emergent Epidemics Lab at Northeastern University. Listen to my interview on the worrying trends in MA on WBUR.
10/21/20: The false promise of herd immunity for COVID-19, Why proposals to largely let the virus run its course — embraced by Donald Trump’s administration and others — could bring “untold death and suffering”. Exited to be included in Christie Aschwanden's fantastic new piece in Nature on herd immunity.
10/18/20: I'm excited to speak Monday (tomorrow) during the COVID19 Dynamics & Evolution Meeting on, "The Role of Behavior, Mobility, and Social-Network Structure on COVID-19 Epidemics." You can still register here.
10/14/20: Why do we say "superspreading event" instead of "superspreader?" Because for diseases like COVID19 it's as much or more about the environment as it is about the individual who's infectious. Learn more in my new video interview with the Washington Post.
10/13/20: The Hindustan Times covered our recent Nature Medicine paper on crowding and the shape of COVID-19 epidemics.
10/12/20: “One concern with targeted lockdowns, Scarpino says, is that they could further drain the goodwill required for effective testing and tracing that could cool these hot spots." I spoke to the Wired about New York City's plan for targeted lockdowns.
10/12/20: “What people demand is clarity," Scarpino said. “It’s important for the public health community to be able to talk honestly about trade-offs." I spoke to the Boston Globe about the need for open dialogue around COVID-19 interventions.
10/08/20: What Does The Recent Rise In COVID-19 'Red Zones' Mean For Massachusetts? Watch my interview on WGBH.
10/07/20: "I would say the president is a superspreader," Scarpino says. "I'm happy to say that."" You can read my interview on superspreading and COVID-19 in Wired.
10/06/20: In Dense Cities Like Boston, Coronavirus Epidemics Last Longer, Northeastern Study Finds. You can read my interview on the shape of COVID-19 epidemics at WBUR.
10/05/20: What's driving the shape of COVID-19 epidemic curves? Our new article investigating that questions is out today in Nature Medicine. You can read the brilliant coverage of our work from Northeastern University and Oxford University.
10/02/20: 'News of the president’s illness “underlines where we are in this pandemic," said Samuel Scarpino.' You can read my interview in the Boston Globe on what it means that the President has COVID-19.
10/01/20: It's simply not safe to continue relaxing measures around indoor gatherings. Watch my interview on the increasingly worrying COVID-19 numbers in MA on WCVB 5.
09/30/20: I spoke with Zeynep Tufekci about why R0 is misleading us about COVID19. You can read her fantastic piece in the Atlantic here.
09/30/20: The state of MA is reporting two different measures of COVID-19 risk and they tell very different stories. You can read my latest interview in the Boston Globe on how we should be interpreting these two numbers.
09/29/20: The COVID-19 numbers are headed in the wrong direction throughout much of Massachusetts. You can listen to my radio interviews on what needs to be done on WBUR and Bloomberg, read one in print at the Boston Globe, and watch me on NBC Boston.
09/25/20: What is airborne transmission and why are we increasingly worried about how it changes the way we should approach COVID-19? Read my interview with News @ Northeastern on how the science around SARS-CoV-2 transmission tells us aerosol transmission should be a major concern.
09/18/20: I spoke with the Las Vegas Review-Journal on how to interpret the latest contact tracing data from Las Vegas. Not surprisingly, it points to casinos and hotels.
09/15/20: "Pinto’s and Scarpino’s long term goal is to apply these same wastewater sample methods to more vulnerable populations such as refugee camps and informal settlements." Read about our new work on machine learning and wastewater surveillance for COVID-19 in this News @ Northeastern article.
09/15/20: "Public health initiatives work best when there’s sufficient education, buy-in from participants, and access to resources that make following the rules possible, said Samuel Scarpino, an epidemiologist at Northeastern University." Read my latest interview with the Boston Globe on how schools should be approaching partying during COVID-19.
09/14/20: I joined Boston News 25 to discuss what it means when, "Experts warn it might take up to four years to supply COVID-19 vaccine globally."
09/13/20: Northeastern University is a founding member of the Trinity Challenge which is, "a coalition of members united by the common aim of using data and advanced analytics to develop insights and actions to contribute to a world better protected from health emergencies." I am a member of the Challenge's Data and IT working group and you can read more about our efforts in this article from News @ Northeastern.
09/07/20: "As we saw in the recent super-spreading event in Maine, when you have lots of individuals travel to the same place, COVID can end up gaining a foothold across a wide geographic area as a result." Read my interview with the Boston Globe on how the "Sturgis biker rally fallout may have costly health consequences."
08/26/20: I joined KNPR Nevada Public Radio to discuss the danger of super-spreading events on the Las Vegas strip.
08/26/20: "We cannot prevent the next #COVID from finding its way into a public market. We can prevent future 'COVIDs' from going pandemic. And that's where the data come in." Listen to Michael Roytman, Daniel Mellinger, and me talk security & epi on Kenna Security's podcast.
08/25/20: Our new pre-print on mask wearing and control of SARS-CoV-2 transmission in the United States is live on the medRxiv.
08/23/20: Wired magazine wrote a feature on our recent work studying the socioeconomic biases present in influenza surveillance data in the US. You can read the original paper here.
08/23/20: Our new pre-print on the unintended consequences of inconsistent pandemic control policies is live on the medRxiv.
08/23/20: I spoke with the Las Vegas Review-Journal about the importance of data for preventing super-spreading events during COVID-19 outbreaks.
08/16/20: "This disconnect between the small but rapidly growing science around outbreak forecasting and its now widespread application creates a complex situation for researchers, clinicians, and policy makers. As a result, we echo calls for disease-forecasting centres at the national level that provide not only predictive models but also expert guidance to policy makers and the public around the interpretation of the models." Read our new commentary in The Lancet Digital Health on the role of predictive modelling during the COVID-19 pandemic.
08/08/20: Slow COVID-19 tests are severely hampering our ability to control the epidemic in the United States. You can read my interview about how this critical issue effects local communities around Boston here.
08/04/20: I was appointed as an External Faculty member at the Santa Fe Institute. I am honored and excited to formally rejoin the SFI and support their research, educational, and outreach missions.
08/04/20: I was interviewed by Bloomberg News, NBC Boston, CBS Boston, WGBH, WEEI, others and about the urgent need increase measures against COVID-19 in MA.
08/03/20: Our call to increase measures against COVID-19 in MA made the front page of the Boston Globe and was highlighted by Rachel Maddow on MSNBC!
07/27/20: Scientists still don't have all the answers about the COVD-19 pandemic, and that's ok. Read my interview with Northeastern News on how the public is getting a front-row seat to the scientific method here.
07/23/20: What does the strong, partisan divide over COVID-19 mean for the US? You can read my interview with 538 News here.
07/22/20: Honored to be featured alongside one of my PhD advisors, Prof. Lauren Ancel Meyers, in the Santa Fe Institute's coverage of our COVID-19 work. You can read the piece here.
07/21/20: I was interviewed by Northeastern News about what it means for the White House to strip the CDC of control over COVID-19 hospitalization data. You can read the piece here.
07/16/20: We have to ensure COVID-19 test results are available within 48 hours. I was interviewed by NBC10 Boston on the critical need to provide rapid test results.
07/10/20: Ensuring that these individuals are represented in health data is a way to give them a voice, Scarpino says. Read the excellent coverage of our new paper on socioeconomic biases in influenza surveillance by Northeastern News here.
07/09/20: We’re Not Prepared to Track Disease Outbreaks in America’s Poorest ZIP Codes writes Linda Poon in her Bloomberg CityLab coverage of our new article on socioeconomic biases in influenza surveillance. You can read the story here.
07/09/20: Our new paper on socioeconomic biases in influenza surveillance is now online at PLoS Computational Biology.
07/04/20: I spoke with Dasia Moore at the Boston Globe on the importance of caution as we continue re-opening Massachusetts. You can read her piece here.
06/26/20: On reopening schools, scientists say proceed with caution. Read my new interview in the Boston Globe on the risks of re-opening schools in the US.
06/25/20: I was on WGBH's Greater Boston last night to discuss the importance of face masks in stopping the spread of COVID-19. You can watch the segment here.
06/23/20: Steven Johnson, author of The Ghost Map, had me on his podcast, Fighting Coronavirus. You can listen to the episode here.
06/23/20: "Preventing superspreader events could go a long way toward stopping COVID-19." I was interviewed by Christie Aschwanden for her latest piece in Scientific American on how, "How ‘Superspreading’ Events Drive Most COVID-19 Spread."
06/23/20: How can scientists be better communicators during emergencies like COVID-19? I discussed this question and more with Northeastern College of Science Associate Dean Mark Patterson during a Facebook Live event. You can watch the recording here.
06/18/20: Chia-Hung Yang and I just posted a pre-print describing his dissertation research on how gene network evolution can drive rapid speciation. You can find the manuscript on the bioRxiv.
06/10/20: I was interviewed by Steven Johnson, author of The Ghost Map, about how "How Data Became One of the Most Powerful Tools to Fight an Epidemic." You can read the essay in the New York Times Magazine.
05/28/20: "For many of us, there really is no comparison. You'd have to go back to the Vietnam War, which started 20 years before I was born." I was interviewed by ABC News about the mounting toll of COVID-19.
05/27/20: "Everything is sort of lining up in the direction that if we’re serious about it, we can control this thing,"" says Samuel Scarpino. "We’re just not being serious about it." Nature quoting me in the daily news briefing from a story that ran in Stat News on how "New research rewrites history of when Covid-19 took off in the U.S. — and points to missed chances to stop it".
05/26/20: I spoke with Adam Reilly at WGBH about what worked and what didn't work in our response to the first COVID-19 wave.
05/25/20: Does it matter whether an individual's risk of getting infected and risk of transmitting the infection are correlated? It turns out to matter a lot, especially for herd immunity and contact tracing. Learn more in our new pre-print, which is up now on the arXiv.
05/22/20: Working with a group of scientists at the Institute for Disease Modeling, we're investigating how random chance and transmission heterogeneity shape COVID-19 epidemics. See our pre-print here.
05/14/20: I spoke with VICE News Tonight about the work we're doing at Northeastern's Network Science Institute to study mobility and COVID-19.
05/11/20: Together with a large team in the Network Science Institute at Northeastern, we released a COVID-19 mobility dashboard and a new report on how social contacts and commuting patterns have changed in the US.
05/08/20: In collaboration with Prof. Brandon Ogbunu's group at Brown, we're studying how environmental transmission of SARS-CoV-2 effects the severity of COVID-19 outbreaks. See our pre-print here.
05/06/20: Munik and I just published a Viewpoint on Modelling COVID-19 in Nature Reviews Physics.
05/06/20: Trying to make sense of the Wild West that is current COVID-19 testing? Check out my recent interview in National Geographic.
05/06/20: Truly honored to be interviewed alongside Lauren Ancel Meyers and Sara Dell Valle in this new Santa Fe Reporter feature on the power of data to fight COVID-19.
05/06/20: Our critique of a recent SARS-CoV-2 genome study is online early at PNAS.
05/04/20: How should we be preparing for restaurants and bars to re-open for eat-in dining? Hear my perspective on NBC 5 Chicago.
05/03/20: The state of Massachusetts just crossed above 4,000 confirmed COVID-19 deaths, making this disease the third leading cause of mortality in the state. I spoke with the Boston Globe on what this means historically.
04/28/20: Check out my far ranging interview on COVID-19 recorded by WFHB, Bloomington IN for their Interchange podcast.
04/27/20: In collaboration with Dan Bolnick (UCONN), Rebecca Carrier (Northeastern), Kathryn Milligan Myhre (University of Alaska Fairbanks), and Natalie Steinel (UMASS Lowell), we were awarded a Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation Symbiosis Model Systems award to study the multi-omics of diet in sticklebacks.
04/24/20: "Herd immunity isn’t the answer." Great article on our recent #covid19 research, with a link to my new webinar by Northeastern News.
04/23/20: I'm excited to present on our COVID19 work during the Understanding and Exploring Network Epidemiology in the Time of Coronavirus workshop. You can register to attend here.
04/20/20: We have a new pre-print up on Crowding and the epidemic intensity of COVID-19 transmission. Munik Shrestha from our group is a co-author! You can read the pre-print here.
04/17/20: I was back on NBC Boston to discuss the newest COVID19 projections for MA.
04/16/20: Moritz Kraemer and I are participating in a Reddit AMA at 1pm Pacific today hosted by The Authoritative Source. Join us here.
04/15/20: Why are serosurveillance studies for COVID-19 so vital? Read Nadia Drake's great article in National Geographic.
04/14/20: Why is asking when we will reopen the wrong question? Read Ed Yong's incredible piece in the Atlantic feature leaders from across public health and epidemiology.
04/14/20: I was interviewed by CBS Boston about the timeline for starting to relax physical distancing measures. You can watch the recording here.
04/10/20: I was back on Mut at Night on WBUR to discuss how things are progressing with COVID-19. You can listen the recording here.
04/09/20: Interested in how scientists are investigating ways to "re-open" our societies after the first COVID-19 waves? See the coverage of the Santa Fe Institute workshop I co-organized in the Santa Fe Reporter. And, you can watch the recording here.
04/06/20: In collaboration with the team at the Institute for Disease Modeling, we wrote a manuscript on the seeding of COVID-19 in Sub-Saharan Africa. You can read the pre-print here.
04/05/20: One challenging aspect of this outbreak is finding experts you can trust. The brilliant C. Brandon Ogbunu wrote a piece for Wired on how to identify COVID carpetbaggers.
04/02/20: Excited to be on Carlos Guarnizo's science podcast to discuss COVID19. You can watch our conversation on You Tube.
04/01/20: I was interviewed on the Santa Fe Institute's Complexity podcast. You can listen here.
04/01/20: Our Science article on the effectiveness of non-pharmaceutical interventions for controlling COVID-19 in China has gotten wonderful coverage in the press and on social media. You can find most of the stories and discussions here.
03/31/20: Together with a large consortium, we are studying mobility patterns across the US in response to COVID19. You can read our first pre-print here.
03/31/20: I co-organized a Santa Fe Institute workshop on COVID-19: After the First Waves. You can watch the recording here.
03/26/20: If you're interested in learning more about our efforts to map COVID-19, see my interview on Vice News.
03/25/20: Our article on the effectiveness of non-pharmaceutical interventions for controlling COVID-19 in China is out now in Science. This work was co-authored with Chia-Hung Yang, a PhD student in our lab.
03/24/20: Along with the rest of the open COVID-19 data working group, I coauthored a manuscript out now in Nature Scientific Data on the open line-list data we maintain for the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak.
03/23/20: I participated in a live, Boston City Council hearing on the city's COVID-19 response. You can hear from all the incredible, dedicated panelists here here.
03/23/20: How can we better leverage real-time, human mobility data to track COVID-19 and are the privacy risks worth it? Read our letter to Science and an interview with me and many others.
03/19/20: National Geographic included me in a story on, "What’s the safest gathering size to slow the coronavirus?" Turns out there isn't one. Learn more here.
03/18/20: I was interviewed by Bob Oakes on WBUR's Morning Edition about how the cases of COVID-19 being reported may just be the tip of the iceberg. You can listen to the interview here.
03/16/20: If you're interested in learning more about the tough road ahead of us in the US, you can read my recent interview in the Boston Globe.
03/13/20: I joined MUT at Night on WEEI Radio in Boston to discuss the COVID-19 outbreak.
03/12/20: Bloomberg wrote a feature story on my prediction that the US and Massachusetts is on the same COVID-19 trajectory and has to act now to flatten the curve.
03/06/20: We just posted a pre-print describing the results of a study into how mobility--and other interventions in China--slowed the spread of COVID-19. You can read the article here .
03/06/20: Axios wrote a short piece on how recent work we published explains why the link between social contagions and real biological contagions are a feature of modern outbreaks because of misinformation and fake news. You can read the article here.
03/03/20: Northeastern News wrote a fantastic story on how interacting social and biological contagions drive outbreaks like COVID-19. You can read the article here.
03/03/20: I was interviewed by Helen Branswell at STAT news regarding the very serious situation with COVID-19 in Seattle. You can read the article here.
02/29/20: I wrote a Medium post based on a conversation I recently had about COVID19. I hope it's helpful and, as always, feedback is very welcome.
02/27/20: If you have K-12 children and are concerned about how to prepare for local COVID19 transmission in the US, I'd suggest reading this recent article in the Washington Post that I was interviewed for.
02/24/20: Can we distinguish interacting pathogens from social contagion? The manuscript I co-authored with Jean-Gabriel Young and Laurent Hébert-Dufresne answers this question in our new Nature Physics publication.
02/19/20: Together with a large, international group, we are curating a line-list data for the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak. You can read a recent correspondence about the ongoing importance of our work in The Lancet Infectious Diseases here .
02/10/20: A manuscript I co-authored with Antoine Allard, Laurent Hebert-Dufresne, and Ben Althouse on predicting epidemic risk, with an application to nCoV2019, was just posted as a pre-print to the arXiv.
02/10/20: Storybench, a digital storytelling publication at Northeastern University's school of journalism, wrote an article on the nCoV2019 maps I've helped create. You can read the interview here.
02/08/20: Mapbox wrote a blog post on how we're using some of their tools to track nCoV2019. You can read the post here.
01/30/20: I was interviewed by Northeastern News about work we're doing to curate data on the nCoV outbreak and map the spread of the disease. You can read the article here.
01/24/20: I'm working with a large, collaborative group to develop and visualize line-list data for the ongoing nCoV19 outbreak. You can learn more here and see a live map of the outbreak here .
01/06/20: This semester, I'm teaching a graduate course called, "Contagion on Networks." Follow along on my Teaching Page.
12/17/19: I'm teaching at the Complex Networks Winter Workshop in beautiful Quebec City. You can learn more about the program and apply for next year's iteration here.
12/13/19: Chia-Hung Yang successfully defended his dissertation proposal and has advanced on to PhD candidacy!
11/15/19: Dharma Platform is presenting at the 2019 Place & Health Conference at the CDC Global Communications Center in Atlanta, Georgia. You can register and/or follow the conference here.
10/23/19: Google and Deep Mind are co-hosting a three-day working group on the future of AI and healthcare. I'm looking forward to attending the meeting in Tel Aviv later this month.
10/22/19: Dharma Platform is presenting with Seva Foundation at the NetHope Global Summit in Puerto Rico on digital transformation. Learn more and follow the meeting here.
10/03/19: I'm excited to give an invited lecture entitled, "Real-time Data for Ground Truth: Humanitarian and Emergency Response Applications of Novel Data and New Technologies" at the Complex Systems for the Most Vulnerable satellite meeting during CCS 2019 in Singapore. The event is co-organized by researchers from UNICEF, the World Food Programme, and the ISI Foundation.
09/05/19: Michael Roytman, the Chief Data Scientist at Kenna Security and co-Founder of Dharma Platform, Mollie Woods, Senior Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning Advisor at ChildFund International, and I are presenting on data security at MERLTech DC 2019,.
08/21/19: In graduate school, I co-developed a set algorithms for geospatial data analysis and they were just granted an active, European patent. You can read about the methodology here.
08/06/19: I'm giving a keynote at the Latin American Conference on Complex Networks in Cartagena, Colombia. You can find out more about the conference here.
07/31/19: Our manuscript presenting evidence for asymptomatic transmission of whooping cough is early online at Clinical Infectious Diseases You can find a full text version on my Publications page.
07/19/19: Proud to announce that Dharma Platform and ChildFund International have partnered to, "grow and improve the speed of outreach to vulnerable children through digital data collection." You can read the press release here.
07/09/19: If you're interested in how Chia-Hung Yang and I are studying gene network evolution, you can watch a video of my recent presentation here.
06/26/19: I participated in a panel discussion during the Geographic Perspectives on Infectious Diseases in Humans, Animals, and the Environment workshop at Harvard University. You can find a post and video of my opening remarks on the Dharma Platform Blog.
06/04/19: The manuscript I co-authored with Jean-Gabriel Young and Laurent Hébert-Dufresne on interacting contagions was just posted as a pre-print to the arXiv.
06/02/19: I'm speaking at the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists meeting about utilizing novel data streams and technologies for public health surveillance. If you can't join in-person, my slides are here.
05/28/19: Please join us at the Diversify NetSci 2019 Satellite. Building on successful (informal) meetings of the Women in Network Science in 2018 at CompleNet, INSNA’s Sunbelt, and NetSci, we propose a day-long satellite dedicated to diversity in Network Science. Learn more and register to attend here.
05/20/19: I participated in writing a World Economic Forum white paper on digital transformation and novel data-driven insights. Read the report here.
05/13/19: I'm excited to present Crowdsourced community health surveillance during emergencies using web-based cloud technology at the WebConf satellite Data Science for Social Good.
04/29/19: I spoke at the ICT4D conference on how Good Data Saves Lives. Read more about the conference and what I disucussed here.
04/18/19: The manuscript I co-authored with Rafael Guerrero, C. Brandon Ogbunu, Jim Hartl, and others was just acecpted at Genetics. You can still read the pre-print here.
03/22/19: Ben Althouse and I wrote a commentary in PNAS on bed bugs: Uncovering the hidden cost of bed bugs.
03/21/19: I presented a webinar to the DME for Peace community on Humanitarian Uses of Emerging Technology. You can listen to a recording here.
02/28/19: Northeastern University News wrote a great article on our recent outbreak prediction work. Read it here.
02/22/19: Giovanni Petri and I just published an article in Nature Communications: On the predictability of infectious disease outbreaks.
02/22/19: The Northeastern University College of Science News wrote an article on the whooping cough book I co-edited for Oxford University Press. Read it here.
02/14/19: C. Brandon Ogbunu, Randall Harp, and I wrote an essay on predicting infectious disease outbreaks for The Conversation, which was just republished by The World Economic Forum.
02/08/19: Our paper on food insecurity and cancer survivors is online at Cancer Causes & Control.
01/11/19: Dharma Platform has partnered with Riders For Health to bring digital transformation to last mile health in Africa. Here's a video of the incredible work they're doing.
01/06/19: I'll be speaking at NetSci X in Santiago Chile. You can follow along with a live stream on the website.
12/17/18: I am excited to participate in the Complex Networks Winter Workshop in Quebec City! You can find the slides for my lecture here.
12/07/18: I am participating in the International Workshop on Theoretical perspectives in Network Science at Seoul National University and organized by the Asia Pacific Center for Theoretical Physics. Learn more about the workshop here.
11/25/18: We posted a pre-print describing how the "Proteostasis environment shapes higher-order epistasis operating on antibiotic resistance" to the bioRxiv.
11/05/18: The Network Science Institute at Northeastern University is recruiting for an open rank, tenure-track professor in network science and human health. Learn more and apply here.
10/25/18: Chia-Hung and I are both speaking at the First Annual Northeastern University Network Science Student Research Symposium. See the schedule here and join us on Nov. 1st!
10/11/18: What are the information theoretical limits to forecasting disease spread? Giovanni Petri and I have just posted an updated version of our manuscript, "On the predictability of infectious disease outbreaks" to the arXiv.
10/04/18: I was named to the Scientific Steering Committee for BioFire's Trend surveillance system. See the data in action here.
09/26/18: I participated in a World Economic Forum meeting on data sharing during outbreaks in NYC.
09/01/18: Wan He joined our lab as new PhD student in Network Science! We're very excited to have her join our group.
08/16/18: I collaborated on an analysis of how the participatory surveillance systems, FluNearYou, can augment existing influenza surveillance in the US. Read it here.
08/13/18: Our paper on neonatal intensive care networks in the US, led by Munik Shrestha and in collaboration with the Vermont Oxford Network, is online at EPJ Data Science. Read it here.
08/07/18: I interviewed by the Northeastern Univ. undergraduate science magazine, NUSci, about Nipah, Ebola, Zika, and other emerging infectious diseases. Read the article here.
07/26/18: Caitlin Rivers and I published a Correspondence in Nature on predicting outbreak trajectories. Read it here.
07/09/18: Chia-Hung Yang and I both attended the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution meeting in Yokohama, Japan. Preprints describing the work we presented are coming very soon.
06/11/18: I'm giving an invited lecture on predictability and network dynamics at the annual NetSci meeting in Paris later this week.
05/25/18: I used data curated by Prof. Caitlin Rivers at Johns Hopkins, imported into Dharma Platform, to write a short post about the ongoing Ebola outbreak in the DRC.
05/05/18: The schedule for our satellite at NetSci 2018, Networks and Contagion, is live. Check it out here.
04/25/18: I debated about data privacy at the 2018 Digital Health meeting in Lyon. Learn more about the conference here.
04/10/18: My interview on the Important Not Important podcast about algorithms, disease modeling, & why interdisciplinary approaches to science are so critical is online. You can listen to the podcast here.
04/03/18: Our new manuscript on a socioeconomic bias in influenza surveillance is on the arXiv. If you're looking for the supplment, see my Publications page.
03/28/18: Both Munik and Chia-Hung had manuscripts accepted for podium presentations at conferences this summer. We're looking forward to seeing everyone and learning about new and exciting science later this year! Learn more about what our group is up to here.
03/17/18: I participated in Brown University's Hack for Humanity Event. Learn more about this amazing event here.
03/12/18: I spoke at the Harvard School of Public Health's Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics on the Predictability of Infectious Disease Outbreaks. Watch it here.
02/25/18: We had two exciting papers on next generation surveillance systems accepted. Read them on the Publications page.
02/14/18: Our latest pre-print, "The Interhospital Transfer Network for Very Low Birth Weight Infants in the United States" is on the arXiv.
02/04/18: Have you had a manuscript delayed at the arXiv due to how your work was classified? If so, try out the Moderator Buster tool I built using 20,000 pre-prints and deep learining.
01/12/18: I was interviewed about our work on Zika virus sexual transmission by Infectious Disease News.
01/01/18: Don't close the gates is a News and Views I just published in Nature Physics. You can read it here.
12/19/17: I just published an essay on influenza vaccination. You can read it on Medium.
11/21/17: I was interviewed by Northeastern University about my reseach interests and ended up also discussing my love for cooking and interest in creativity.
11/08/17: I am speaking at the Workshop on Data and Algorithm Bias during CIKM 2017 in Singapore. More information here.
10/27/17: I was name a Fellow of the ISI Foundation in Turin Italy. You can read about the fellows program and the exciting complex systems work being done at ISI here.
10/17/17: I'm on the program committee for NERCCS 2018: the First Northeast Regional Conference on Complex Systems. Learn more and submit your abtracts here.
10/01/17: I was interviewed by fivethirtyeight .com about how power outages in Puerto Rico might increase mosquito-born disease incidence. You can read the full article here.
09/25/17: Our manuscript on how the risk of Zika virus sexual transmission may be dramatically underestimated is now early online at PLoS Pathogens.
09/17/17: I'm honored and humbled to recieve one of two Junior Researcher Awards from the Complex Systems Society. Our wonderful community makes us all stronger. Thank you all!
08/20/17: I'm giving a keynote address at CompleNet18. Submit your contributed talks here.
08/07/17: Our manuscript on Zika virus sexual transmission is early online at PNAS.
07/25/17: A paper describing a novel use of BioFire data for disease surveillance is on bioRxiv.
07/02/17: Our paper on how asymmetric percolation drives a double transition in sexual contact networks is on the arXiv.
06/15/17: Our paper on the topology of gene expression networks is out in Proceedings of the Royal Society. Read it here.
05/28/17: Excited to announce that my group is moving to the Network Science Insitute at Northeastern this fall! Im grateful for everyone at UVM & thrilled to join the team Northeastern University.
05/15/17: Our paper on Estimating trait heritability in highly fecund species was selected for the 2016 G3: Genes|Genomes|Genetics Spotlight. Read about it here.
04/17/17: I spoke at the Gund Institute Research Slam about the predictability of disease outbreaks. You can watch the four minute talk here.
04/03/17: The code and data for our work on gene networks and local adaptation are on GitHub.
03/21/17: What are the information theoretical limits to forecasting disease spread? Giovanni Petri and I explore this topic in our new pre-print, which is now live on the arXiv.
03/01/17: Our work on designing arbovirus surveillance systems is early online at Emerging Infectious Diseases. Read it here.
02/09/17: Munik and my collaborative paper with the Vermont Oxford Network on the Interhospital Transfer Network for Very Low Birth Weight Infants in the United States was just accepted for a podium presentation at the Pediatric Academic Societies annual meeting. We are very excited about this new direction for the lab!
01/25/17: Our satellite on Networks and Contagion was selected for NetSci 2017. More details, and a link to abstract submission, here.
01/16/17: Stat 201: Computational Statistics is starting this week! Head over to my teaching page for more information.
12/22/16: Our work on designing arbovirus surveillance systems was just accepted at Emerging Infectious Diseases.
12/05/16: There are three faculty members from the Complex Systems Center at UVM on the SIAM Workshop on Network Science program committee. We're looking forward to reading your best new work! Submit here.
11/30/16: Are we underestimating the Zika sexual transmission risk? My collaborators and I think so. Read our new pre-print on bioRxiv.
11/10/16: I am now a Deputy Editor at PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases. I'm looking forward to reading your best work on advancing our scientific, public health, and medical understanding of neglected pathogens.
10/15/16: We just posted a pre-print for our work on the topology of local adaptation. Read it on bioRxiv.
10/07/16: Our manuscript "On the young age of intraspecific herbaceous taxa" is early online at New Phytologist.
09/26/16: Presenting tonight at the Burlington Data Science Meet-up on socioeconomic biases in influenza surveillance. Visit the organization website for more information.
09/12/16: Submit to the new session on health, data, and computation at WWW 2017. Details here.
08/31/16: I'm currently teaching a class on statistical learning. All of the material will be posted to the teaching page on this website.
08/09/16: Lots of exciting press coverage of our paper in Nature Physics. You can find most of them here.
08/03/16: Great article in Smithsonian Magazine discussing our new paper on how replacing sick workers can accelerate disease transmission.
08/01/16: Our paper on how replacing key members of society during an outbreak can accelerate transmission is out in Nature Physics. Read it here here.
06/15/16: Sophia Navarre has joined our group and will be working on a study of how climate variables affect the persistence and spread of arboviruses.
06/08/16: I'm giving a seminar to the Mathematics & Foundation of Complex Systems group at the ISI foundation in Turin Italy on fundamental limits to disease prediction.
05/13/16: George Chrisafis, an undergraduate in our group, was awarded UVM's Common Good Internship award and will spend the summer at the Hutch in Seattle. Read more here here.
04/19/16: Our paper on the cost-effectiveness of next-generation vaccines: the case of pertussis is early online at Vaccine. Read it here here.
04/15/16: Presenting on how high tech surveillance systems overlook the poor during the Institute for Disease Modeling's annual research symposium.
04/04/16: Presented on the challenges of forecasting infectious diseases with Alessandro Vespignani at the Vermont Complex Systems Center's "Big Spread, Big Dead" event. See my talk here.
03/28/16: Our paper on the economic benefit of priming children with the whole-cell pertussis vaccine is online first at JAMA pediatrics. Read it here and the editorial here.
03/22/16: Co-organized a workshop at the Santa Fe Institute on the resurgence of whooping cough. Read the press release here.
03/01/16: Munik Shrestha joined the Emergent Epidemics Lab as our first postdoctoral researcher. Learn more about Munik and his research here.
02/11/16: I attended a Chatham House roundtable discussion on Strengthening Data Sharing for Public Health. Read more here.
01/10/16: The Santa Fe Reporter wrote a nice article on the whooping cough resurgence that featured our recent pertussis paper. Read it here.
12/15/15: I am co-organizing a workshop at the Santa Fe Institute on the re-emergence of pertussis.
11/07/15: The talk I gave on poverty and disease at Creative Mornings Santa Fe is now online. Watch it here.
10/11/15: Our paper on paper on the challenges and opportunities of using novel data streams for disease surveillance is in press at EPJ Data Science. Read it here.
9/30/15: I'll be speaking at Creative Mornings Santa Fe on Wed. Oct. 14th at 9am. Details here.
9/3/15: Our paper on how a prudent behavior can drive accelerating disease transmission is on the arXiv. Read it here.
8/27/15: Our paper on Dynamic Message Passing for recurrent state epidemics on networks is out in PRE. Read it here.
8/01/15: I'm co-organizing a workshop called EpiHack: Analytics on data analytics for public health with the Skoll Global Threats Fund.
6/30/15: The New York Times wrote a nice article about our recent pertussis paper. Read it here.
6/23/15: Our paper on asymptomatic transmission and the resurgence of whooping cough is now online at BMC Medicine. Read it here.
5/13/15: A new version of my R package, binequality, is available on GitHub. Find it here.
3/30/15: Our paper on robust estimation of inequality from binned income data was just accepted at Sociological Methodology. Read the pre-print here and check out the accompanying R package.
3/16/15: Our workshop, "Non-equilibrium versus optimization approaches to the origin of social groups," has been funded for summer 2016 by IMeRA - Aix Marseille Universite.
3/7/15: Excited to announce that I'll be starting as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics and the Complex Systems Center at the University of Vermont in Jan. 2016. I'm looking for graduate students and postdocs, so please send me an email if you are interested in joining our group.
1/12/15: Poverty and Ebola: Why Ebola Goes Viral or Dies Out - see my new article in Nautilus.
1/1/15: Our paper, "Epidemiological and Viral Genomic Sequence Analysis of the 2014 Ebola Outbreak Reveals Clustered Transmission," was published in Clinical Infectious Diseases and covered by the New York Times and The Economist, among others.
12/10/14: I was interviewed about the ongoing Ebola outbreak by Mary-Charlotte on KSFR's Science Radio Cafe, listen here.