Dr. Mike Smith


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Mike is a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Sheffield, in Neil Lawrence’s lab, working on the development of new tools to allow data to be anonymised, through the framework of differential privacy. As part of an innovate UK collaboration Mike is contributing to the build of the scikic inference tool, which will provide both a conversation interface and a backend API for inferring demographic and lifestyle features about individuals. It is hoped it will be a useful tool to demonstrate the power of machine learning. In the future there is  hope to develop a user-centric data model for the analysis and storage of user data, with the motivation that personalised medicine and associated research requires access to user data.

Mike spent most of 2014 lecturing at Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda. There he became involved in the field of Development Informatics, and have several on-going research topics; covering air pollution, nutrition-data, automated microscopy, traffic collision data and malaria distribution prediction. A variety of machine learning methods have been applied (for example Gaussian Process models for the model of malaria distribution). More details about some of these projects can be found at the Artificial Intelligence in the Developing World (AI-DEV) group’s website.

In 2015 , Mike helped to organise the Data @ Sheffield event, as part of the open data science initiative.

The second of the Data Science for Africa events is being held in June 2016, this time in Kampala, Uganda, as part of the wider data science Africa network.

Full profile and publications.