This Week Health

John Brownstein

Chief Innovation Officer

Boston Children's Hospital

John Brownstein is Chief Innovation Officer, Infectious disease epidemiologist at Boston Children's Hospital. He is also a Professor at Harvard Medical School and an on-air Medical Contributor for ABC News.

He directs the Computational Epidemiology Group at the Children’s Hospital Informatics Program in Boston. He was trained as an epidemiologist at Yale University.

Overall, his research agenda aims to have translation impact on the surveillance, control and prevention of disease. He has been at the forefront of the development and application of data mining and citizen science to public health, including HealthMap. His efforts are in use by millions each year including the CDC, WHO, DHS, DOD, HHS, and EU, and has been recognized by the National Library of Congress and the Smithsonian. In addition to research achievements, this translational impact comes from playing an advisory role to numerous agencies on real-time public health surveillance including HHS, DHS, CDC, IOM, WHO and the White House.

He was awarded the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the highest honor bestowed by the United States government to outstanding scientists and the Lagrange Prize for international achievements in complexity sciences. Dr. Brownstein is healthcare advisor to Uber and Google as well as co-founder of digital health companies Epidemico and Circulation. He has authored over 250 peer-reviewed articles on epidemiology and public health. This work has been reported on widely including pieces in the New England Journal of Medicine, Science, Nature, New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, CNN, National Public Radio and the BBC.​​​​​​​



We have not focused nearly enough on communication and education for the vaccine. We have been so hyper-focused on the development, which clearly is an amazing scientific achievement we should all be proud of. Then the secondary focus has been distribution. But we have not focused on the communication. That often gets left behind in public health.
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