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Innovator's Dilemma: How SF's Rajiv Bhatia Pioneered Open Health Data and Ruffled Feathers

BY Sam Roudman | Thursday, February 6 2014

Rajiv Bhatia

During his fifteen-year tenure at San Francisco’s Department of Public Health, Dr. Rajiv Bhatia excelled. By measuring the health impacts of proposed laws and policies, he created powerful tools to advocate on behalf of the disadvantaged. Gentrification is innately distasteful to many: Bhatia showed how it could be harmful. His work contributed to today’s civic obsession with open data and transparency before those words began to buzz in the ears of bureaucrats, civic hackers and entrepreneurs. He looked at data politically, and searched for political fights to deploy it in. At least he did until June of last year. Read More

First POST: Not Clapping

BY Micah L. Sifry | Wednesday, August 14 2013

Exclusively for Personal Democracy Plus subscribers: How to protect your online communications; Bitcoin comes under federal scrutiny; Booker rises; Chicago wants to know if you're sick; and much, much more. Read More

What the Internet Can Tell Us About Flu Season

BY Miranda Neubauer | Friday, February 1 2013

It's a little too soon to use search data to decide whether it's time to break out the hazmat suit. But Google data is becoming more and more useful to public health professionals — and someday soon, it might be a way to predict an outbreak long before other data becomes available to document the spread of disease. Read More

The Zombie Apocalypse Method of Getting Eyeballs (on Boring Stuff)

BY Nancy Scola | Friday, May 20 2011

The CDC recently posted a guide to preparing for the coming zombie apocalypse. What, I ask you, are our federal health services for if not to prepare us to survive the coming rise of the undead? Right. That's why we saw ... Read More

Using Twitter to Track the Spread of Flu

BY Nancy Scola | Thursday, July 15 2010

Researchers are building upon the idea that Google can be a good flu tracking mechanism by studying what Twitter tells us about the spread of disease. One potential advantage of Twitter, reports Technology Review's ... Read More

"Social Media Envoys" Tweet Against Malaria

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, March 16 2010

Some big names in social media are using their online networks to draw attention to the problem of malaria's devastating effects in much of the world, all part of a UN initiative: Read More

What new media is good for, from

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, January 4 2010

Extending our public health programs, through an integrated communications strategy. Bringing up-to-date and accurate information to support health decision making where people are already spending time, and listening ... Read More