COVID-19 researchers share insights at the November COVID Information Commons webinar.

This month’s Covid Information Commons (CIC) webinar brought together researchers, students and leaders in nonprofits. The CIC serves as a platform for researchers and scientists to share knowledge and collaborate on research about COVID. This month, the CIC project team announced the launch of a new feature at the NSF COVID Awards & PI Database, which provides details on over 900 COVID-related NSF awards. PIs are invited to add their information to the database via this form.

The webinar also featured 6 NSF Rapid Response Research investigators: Debra Laefer (New York University), Niema Moshiri (University of California, San Diego), Branden Johnson (Decision Science Research Institute), Ying Zhong (University of Southern Florida), Leila Hedayatifar (New England Complex Systems Institute) and Xifeng Yan (University of California, Santa Barbara) who gave 5 minute lighting talks about their research on different aspects of COVID-19. Some topics the researchers talked about included developing epidemiology mechanisms to enhance the response of individuals to the risk of COVID-19 contraction, real-time phylogenetic inference and transmission cluster analysis of COVID-19, the media’s impact on risk-perception and behaviour of individuals towards the risk of contracting COVID-19, technologies for mask decontamination, studying mobility patterns in communities, and forecasting the spread of COVID-19 in small communities using AI models. Videos of their talks are available at the Northeast Big Data Hub YouTube channel.

During the webinar, researchers also answered questions attendees had about their research work on COVID-19. Leila  Hedayatifar shared preliminary findings on her research about mobility trends during the pandemic. Niema Moshiri, clarifying the strategy he used to determine the accuracy of his viral MSA against other alignment tools, shared a manuscript which details the metrics used to determine the accuracy of his viral MSA. At the end of the webinar, attendees walked away with insight about ongoing COVID research, and opportunities for collaboration were sparked among the researchers.

The next CIC lightning talks and Q&A webinar will be held on Wednesday, December 9, 2020, 3:00 – 4:00 PM ET. The featured researchers will present on topics including transit accessibility and public health, electronic mentoring in graduate programs, human milk and infant feeding, prototyping of a new type of medical mask, and more in the context of COVID-19. Register for the December webinar, sign up for the CIC mailing list, and join the CIC Slack channel to keep up-to-date with upcoming events and opportunities and engage with the COVID Information Commons community.