Epidemic. We hear that word and immediately conjure bad images in our heads. Rightly so, as much of this can be attributed to false ideas and behaviors.
But, what if epidemics could be seen in a positive way?
For context, Merriam-Webster defines the word epidemic as this: “affecting or tending to affect a disproportionately large number of individuals within a population, community, or region at the same time“.
Based on this definition, we should be striving to affect the world around us by spreading more than just disease, but compassion, creativity, positivity, and awareness of our humanness.
01:35: John dives into how the seeds of Epistemix started at the Graduate School of Public Health at the University of Pittsburgh. Additionally, they were an NIH Center of Excellence for modeling infectious disease for a little over a decade.
03:36: Malcolm Gladwell’s book “The Tipping Point” had a great influence on the ideas that are part of the fabric of Epistemix.
06:20: A computational agent is a component of how individuals are represented in the data models being created by Epistemix. This allows them to determine behaviors and patterns that would impact the spread of diseases.
12:08: John shares the work they did with Freeman on the impact in the events industry. The outcomes of the research indicated that attending in-person business events is safer than daily activities like going to the grocery store.
17:03: The demographic of specific geographical regions compared to the converging of people at an event are the research models that Epistemix produces. This allows them to have an apples-to-apples comparison on individual impacts, health and safety protocols, and mask requirements, for example.
20:16: Overall immunity and the boost from vaccinations are leading us to a tipping point where COVID vaccines will be commonplace like flu vaccines.
25:37: From a data perspective, there are dynamics of this epidemic that are behaving in very distinctive wave patterns. Much of this is impacted by behaviors across regions, but also weather patterns through seasonality.
30:42: Myths abound around diseases, allergies, and sickness being tied to the weather. However, this can be attributed to how people behave during certain seasons and weather patterns. For example, festivals, sporting events, etc.
35:26: The narrative of something can shape the spread of ideas and behaviors. But, one thing to consider is the spread of compassion to surface the humanness of people in spite of the surrounding circumstances.