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The second cohort of Predoctoral Fellows for the Institute of Digital Innovation (IDIA) includes math PhD student

The Institute of Digital Innovation (IDIA) at George Mason University has announced its second cohort of IDIA Predoctoral Fellows, including Alonso Gabriel Ogueda-Oliva, Mathematical Sciences PhD candidate. 

Applicants to the competitive fellowship program are encouraged to form an interdisciplinary team of faculty mentors across the Mason ecosystem and propose an ambitious, interdisciplinary research agenda that aligns with IDIA’s mission of catalyzing cutting-edge computing research that shapes digital society and promotes equality, well-being, security, and prosperity.

Ogueda-Oliva is working on “A New Data-Driven Machine Learning Framework to Predict Dynamics of Infectious Diseases Incorporating Human Behavior in Epidemiological Models.” His project will integrate social and behavioral sciences research and predictive analytics to improve mathematical modeling of infectious diseases to minimize unintended outcomes of public health interventions used in response to pandemics.

“If we are able to understand how human behavior impacts diseases spread, we may potentially save lives,” said Ogueda-Oliva, who holds a BS in mathematical civil engineering and an MS in mathematics from Universidad Tecnica Federico Santa Maria in his native Chile. “The project itself can help identify and address health disparities by studying the spread of infectious diseases and developing effective interventions that target marginalized populations.”

His faculty mentors are Padmanabhan Seshaiyer, a professor in the Mathematical Sciences Department; Taylor Anderson, an assistant professor in the Geography and Geoinformation Science Department, and Brian Levy, an assistant professor in the Sociology and Anthropology Department.

“I have worked in different projects throughout my career, mostly on education and tsunami evacuation modeling,” said Ogueda-Oliva. “Now, with the help of my advisors, I can bring all the skills I have learned during these years in order to make a contribution to society.”

Learn more about all the new IDIA Fellows.