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Complex Systems Seminar "Where models meet morality: What role should complexity science play in addressing racial and socioeconomic disparities in the COVID-19 crisis?"

Jon Zelner, School of Public Health, University of Michigan
Tuesday, March 9, 2021
11:30 AM-1:00 PM
ABSTRACT: Socioeconomic and racial inequalities in infection and mortality have been key features of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States. While identifying these disparities is critical, it has also become clear that we lack the theoretical and methodological tools to integrate the mechanisms generating these inequities into models of infectious disease transmission. This is a huge gap, as such models have become key tools in developing policy and evaluating the impact of interventions ranging from social distancing to vaccination. In this talk, I will outline some of the work done by my research group that is focused on understanding the mechanistic drivers of spatial and socioeconomic variation in infection and death from SARS-CoV-2 in Michigan (see e.g. and conduct a walk-through of an interactive example of a model that attempts to integrate a key driver of infection inequality - residential segregation - into a model of infectious disease transmission. For more information, please visit our lab group site at
Building: Off Campus Location
Location: Virtual
Event Link:
Event Type: Workshop / Seminar
Tags: Biosciences, Coronavirus, Diversity Equity and Inclusion, epidemiology, Health Data, Modeling, Natural Sciences, Public Health, research, social justice
Source: Happening @ Michigan from The Center for the Study of Complex Systems, School of Public Health, The College of Literature, Science, and the Arts, Department of Physics, Michigan Institute for Data Science, LSA Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion