Dr. Hswen is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics and the Bakar Computational Health Institute at the University of California San Francisco. Dr. Hswen graduated with a Doctoral Degree in social and computational epidemiology at the Harvard T.H Chan School of Public Health where she focused on leveraging online big data to uncover social patterns of disease and to inform the development of interventions to improve the health and well-being of the most marginalized subgroups of the population.
Dr. Hswen is in the pursuit of detecting uncomfortable truths. Dr. Hswen’s current research seeks to identify authentic attitudes, feelings, and beliefs that influence population behavior and health. Through the collection of unconventional and underground online social networks, Dr. Hswen captures unfiltered conversations to further understand the connections between social experiences and health.
Dr. Hswen is the founder and Principal Investigator of Covidseeker.com a platform that captures geospatial temporal data from Smartphones to better study the risks between human mobility and infectious disease. The purpose of Covidseeker is to develop a digital mobility database that can be used by researchers, public health officials, and policymakers to identify real-time hotspots of SARS-CoV-2 transmission.
Dr. Hswen’s research has been published in The New England Journal of Medicine, The American Journal of Public Health, Preventive Medicine, Nature npj Digital Medicine, Nature Human Behavior and Nature Scientific Data and her work has been featured in CBC News, Bloomberg News, Nature Magazine, and The Wall Street Journal.
Dr. Hswen has served as Deputy Editor of the Harvard Public Health Review since 2016 and was previously a Kennedy Fellow at Harvard University and a Chateaubriand STEM Fellow, the Embassy of France, and The French National Research Agency for researchers to study the environment and health in France. Before joining UCSF, Dr. Hswen was a visiting Assistant Professor at Aix-Marseille School of Economics (AMSE) where she conducted research in behavioral economics in relation to the promotion of public health interventions. Dr. Hswen is interested in the application of behavioral economic theories to enhance the acceptance and adherence of healthy behaviors and the willingness to share information.