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LCN2 Seminar: Infection Dynamics

  • Jacco Wallinga
Friday 24 February 2017
Gorlaeus Building
Einsteinweg 55
2333 CC Leiden
Science club

Speaker: Jacco Wallinga
Title: Infection Dynamics: using theory and data to reconstruct the causal structure of epidemics

Models of infectious diseases are increasingly used to design and evaluate infection control strategies. The infectious disease models describe (or approximate) a contagion process on a given network structure. The dynamical behaviour of such models is often rich and complex. In rare situations we have observations on the network structure and we are interested in the spread of infection over this network. An example is the referral network of patients between hospitals, which allows us to model the spread of resistant bacteria between hospitals. In most situations we have observations on the infected persons (time of symptom onset, place, demographics) but we have no information on the underlying network structure (the ‘background’). We are interested in interpreting these observations in a ‘background independent’ manner without making strong assumptions about the network structure. Our approach is to use the observed infection events to reconstruct the causal structure of the infection network. We discuss how we can use this approach to make sense of observations during emerging epidemics.

About the LCN2 seminar: This talk is part of a series of seminars organized within an ongoing scientific initiative called "Leiden Complex Networks Network (LCN2), which aims at bringing together scientists with a common interest in both theoretical models and empirical analyses of complex networks and random graphs. The LCN2 community that is being established shares the approach of using networks for describing real-world complex systems and aims at developing related analytical and numerical methods, while also being open to other research approaches for studying complex systems. The talks are designed for a broad audience, allowing for constructive exchanges of ideas between scientists from different disciplines. After the talk, some drinks and simple snacks are provided.

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