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Can mobile health interventions help the developing world?

Academy Member Ambuj Tewari, PhD, discusses the possibilities and challenges of delivering mobile health interventions at scale in the developing world.

Published May 20, 2016

Can mobile health interventions help the developing world?

For the past ten years the Academy has been proud to host our annual Machine Learning Symposium. When the symposium launched in 2006, this subfield of computer science had already been around for a couple of decades, but there were few opportunities for those working at its forefront to join together, share ideas, and build new collaborations. In the, past ten years, as the number of massive data sets available to scientists has exploded, machine learning has become an incredibly important field that underpins much of the technology and systems we use every day-from search engines and social media, to financial analysis, to astronomy and genomics.

Among the keynote speakers at this year's symposium was Academy Member Ambuj Tewari, PhD, of the University of Michigan, who gave a talk on "Personalized Mobile Health Interventions." In particular, his talk focused on the potential for mobile health interventions-things like smartphone apps that help patients with cardiac issues or diabetes to manage their health-to meet the health needs people living in developing countries. In much of the developing world, where cell phones (and increasingly smartphones), are widely used, Tewari believes that mobile health interventions might help increase access to certain kinds of healthcare when the number of doctors and medical professionals remains very low.

Watch a short excerpt from his talk below. You can also view the entire keynote, archived on our Livestream page.

Personalized Mobile Health Interventions, Ambuj Tewari, PhD