Social Media for Social Good – Talk 1
Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) for Disease and Suicide Prevention

By April 20, 2016Events, Seminar

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Speaker: Dr. Vince Silenzio (Associate Professor, Departments of Psychiatry, University of Rochester)
Moderator: Dr. Qijin Cheng (Research Assistant Professor, HKJC Centre for Suicide Research and Prevention)
Date : May 3, 2016 (Tuesday)
Time : 10:30 – 11:30
Venue : Studio 2, 2/F, HKJC Building for Interdisciplinary Research, 5 Sassoon Road, Pokfulam.


Alan Turing, a founding father of computer science and famous for his contributions to cracking the Nazi ‘ENIGMA’ codes, died by suicide not long after having been convicted for homosexuality and stripped of his security clearance shortly after World War II. Yet with the development of computers, and the ongoing wave of social and technological innovation and disruption it helped to release, new tools for research have been created, including novel approaches to the study and prevention of suicide. We will discuss a brief overview of the technological changes relevant to this area, and the ongoing developments in areas such as data science, machine learning, and network analysis that are creating the very possibility that Mr. Turing’s “Turing Machines” — better known to us as “computers” — may be the key to understanding health and disease in previously unimaginable ways, and, with great historical irony, to ultimately ending suicide within marginalized communities.

About the speaker

Dr. Silenzio is Associate Professor in the departments of Psychiatry, Public Health Sciences, and Family Medicine at the University of Rochester. He leads the Laboratory of Informatics and Network Computational Studies / Network Science Lab. The LINCS/NetSci Lab focuses on the development of advanced network analytic, machine learning, and related data science methods to public health and biomedical research domains. Dr. Silenzio’s specific research focus is on translational data science applications to study and engage dispersed or otherwise hidden populations for data collection and intervention delivery, in order to develop computational models to inform novel, broadly based preventive approaches to in the areas of suicide prevention and HIV/AIDS. He currently directs research training curriculum of the NIH Fogarty International Center-funded eCapacity program in mobile health and computational social epidemiology at the University of Rochester, which targets scholars from across the Asia and Pacific region.


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Enquiries: Please contact Mr. Rickey YAU at or 28315232