The conference program is now online

Date: 17 - 19 July, 2017

Venue: Wang Gungwu Lecture Hall, P4 Level, Graduate House, No. 3 University Drive, The University of Hong Kong, Pok Fu Lam, Hong Kong


Advances in computing and genome sequencing together with the rapid penetration of internet and mobile device usage during the past decade have revolutionized the informatics and technology available for improving global health. As witnessed during the major epidemic events in the past 15 years, including SARS, pandemic A/H1N1, MERS, Ebola, and Zika, epidemic modeling has become an increasingly standard approach for assimilating various streams of clinical, virologic, demographic, mobility, social and economic data to inform epidemic preparedness, nowcasting, forecasting and response. Phylodynamics, a field conceptualized around a decade ago for integrating genetic data with epidemiologic data to simultaneously characterize evolution and transmission of pathogens, has now materialized into a flourishing research area with promising potential for translational impact. Digital epidemiology, also emerged around a decade ago, aims to harness real-time intelligence on outbreak occurrence, vaccine safety, vaccine sentiments, health seeking behavior, human mobility etc, from big data sources such as electronic health records, social media, search queries, mobile phone GPS data, biosensing wearables, etc. Collectively, the three synergistic and complementary fields will advance the frontiers of the next generation informatics for global health. This conference aims to catalyze this process by bringing together the leaders in these three fields to present their recent breakthroughs in and share their visions for global health informatics. Topics that shall be discussed during this conference include:

  • Which national healthcare policies and epidemic events have benefited from the three fields?
  • What are the lessons learned regarding the translational impact of these three fields during recent major epidemics and national health decision making?
  • What are the current and future opportunities for integrating the three fields to tackle global health problems?
  • What sources of digital data in different parts of the world can be used for global health informatics?
  • What are the (ethical, legal, technical, etc) barriers and deficiencies (e.g. biases and incompleteness) for using these data?