The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) invited Professor Pej Rohani to participate in a full-day workshop entitled “Integrating Prediction and Forecasting Models for Decision-making: Dengue Epidemic Prediction,” on September 15, 2014 at the White House Conference Center in Washington, D.C.

The workshop is the second in a series convened by OSTP in support of the Predict the Next Pandemic Initiative. The Initiative was launched by Dr. John Holdren, President Obama’s Science and Technology Advisor, at the Data to Knowledge to Action event held in November 2013.

According to OSTP, the meeting brought together government and non-governmental  experts to accelerate the development and federal application of models for predicting dengue epidemics. The activities of this group of experts will contribute to the broader objective of applying infectious disease prediction and forecasting models to support public health and national security decision-making.

Next, Rohani and others will attend a model evaluation workshop. Participants will evaluate dengue prediction models using standardized datasets and community-defined evaluation metrics. Following the model evaluation workshop, participants with models will have the opportunity to refine their models to accept specific data and produce prospective predictions for specific outcomes. Participants with relevant data sources will have time to prepare those data for sharing. After an interim period, OSTP will convene the model evaluation workshop to assess model accuracy and precision (using criteria defined following the first workshop) and identify lessons learned which can guide and strengthen future model development.