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NIH Categorical Spending -NIH Research Portfolio Online Reporting Tools (RePORT)

The annual estimates reflect amounts that change as a result of science, actual research projects funded, and the NIH budget. The research categories are not mutually exclusive. Individual research projects can be included in multiple categories so amounts depicted within each column of this table do not add up to 100 percent of NIH-funded research.  The table shows historical data for FY 2010 through FY 2013. The FY 2014-2015 estimates are based on RCDC actual data. 

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Table of US research expenditure  estimates by NIH for various research, health conditions and disease categories.

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Deforestation, development may be driving Ebola outbreaks, experts say | Al Jazeera America

Deforestation, development may be driving Ebola outbreaks, experts say | Al Jazeera America | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
As humans transform ecosystems and come into closer contact with animals, scientists fear more viral epidemics
ComplexInsight's insight:

After publishing the link to the paper on ebola antibodies in fruitbats in Bangladesh - wespeculated and were asked regarding deforestation impact - this is a good overview article discussing some of the current discussion points.

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How CDC Uses Antibiotic Resistance Data - Food Safety News

How CDC Uses Antibiotic Resistance Data - Food Safety News | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
Food Safety News How CDC Uses Antibiotic Resistance Data Food Safety News Over the past year, you may have noticed that antimicrobial resistance information has been incorporated in the outbreak reports put out by the Centers for Disease Control...
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CDC are one fo the organisations leading information release on antimicrobial resistance. This article explaines where to find out more info from CDC on this area. Worth reading.

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WHO | WHO’s first global report on antibiotic resistance reveals serious, worldwide threat to public health

New WHO report provides the most comprehensive picture of antibiotic resistance to date, with data from 114 countries
ComplexInsight's insight:

Resistance to antibiotics poses a "major global threat" to public health, says a new report by the World Health Organization (WHO).

The WHO team analysed data from 114 countries and said resistance was happening now "in every region of the world". The report describes a "post-antibiotic era", where people die from simple infections that have been treatable for decades.

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Researchers warn against the rise of “big data hubris”

Researchers warn against the rise of “big data hubris” | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
Use Google Flu Trends as an example of how things go wrong.
ComplexInsight's insight:

Good article on risks of interpreting large scale data mining using google flu trends as an example. The conclusion that often data indications are a first point of a process that then requires scientific grunt work to identify if a given correlation is actually relevant or not and that reality is sometimes the grunt work wont be done because its hard, requires funding and takes time. Worth reading.

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Report calls on NHS to consistently use simulation software ahead of big decisions

Report calls on NHS to consistently use simulation software ahead of big decisions | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
The NHS could be run more effectively if senior decision makers used simulation software to test the outcome of different approaches before rolling them out, according to a report out today.

Via Eugene Ch'ng
ComplexInsight's insight:

As someone who believes most many of societies bigger decisions would benefit from better simulations - the report makes for an interesting read. Simulation is going to grow in importance in many areas - as data analytics enable us to consider impact landscapes. Using large scale data analysis to drive simulations we can begin to use simulation as a means of possibility search (something engineering routinely does now) on a broader canvas.

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Telecommunications data show civic dividing lines in major countries

Telecommunications data show civic dividing lines in major countries | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Many residents of Britain, Italy, and Belgium imagine there to be a kind of north-south divide in their countries, marking a barrier between different social groups and regional characteristics. Now a new study by MIT researchers reveals that such divides can be seen in the patterns of communication in those countries and others.

 


Via Claudia Mihai, Complexity Institute
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How to turn open data into better government - The Guardian

How to turn open data into better government - The Guardian | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
The Guardian
How to turn open data into better government
The Guardian
The UK open data initiative – through which departments open up data by default for public use - is universally acknowledged as a force for democratic good.
ComplexInsight's insight:

The first year anniversary of the Open Data Institute founded by the Guardian - is generating a lot of good stories on Open Data success stories. We use open data sources in a number of current research projects and hopefully we can add to some of thos success stories over the next year. In this article the Gaurdian is highlighting open day as a force for democratic good - as the old saying goes sunlight is the best medicine. 

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Cancer costing Europe 'billions'

Cancer costing Europe 'billions' | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Cancer costs countries in the European Union 126bn euro (£107bn) a year, according to the first EU-wide analysis of the economic impact of the disease.

ComplexInsight's insight:

Researchers from the University of Oxford and King's College London analysed data from each of the 27 nations in the EU in 2009. The showed the total cost was 126bn euro and of that 51bn (£43bn) euro was down to healthcare costs including doctors' time and drug costs. Lost productivity, because of work missed through sickness or dying young, cost 52bn (£44bn) euro while the cost to families of providing care was put at 23bn (£19.5bn) euro. While the figures will probably attract the headlnes and hopefulyl motivate new research and solution creation, for those impacted by cancer's on individual and family life  the costs are often seemingly immeasurable. 

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Twitter Can Tell Whether Your Community Is Happy or Not

Twitter Can Tell Whether Your Community Is Happy or Not | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
The results of a study of 82 million tweets from 1,300 counties.
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Interesting article on measuring sentiment analysis through twitter data.

 

 

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Use of Advance Geospatial Data, Tools, Technologies, and Information in Department of Transportation Projects | Blurbs | Main

Use of Advance Geospatial Data, Tools, Technologies, and Information in Department of Transportation Projects | Blurbs | Main | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
TRB’s National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) Synthesis 446: Use of Advance Geospatial Data, Tools, Technologies, and Information in Department of Transportation Projects that explores the development, documentation, and introduction...
ComplexInsight's insight:

This Synthesis report identifies the current state of the practice regarding the development, documentation, and introduction of advanced geospatial technologies within the transportation agencies. It is intended to be a detailed, actively linked, and geographically searchable reference source to online publications, as well as a summary of the results of questionnaires
that were distributed to the departments of transportation (DOTs) (96% of state DOTs responded, as did those of Puerto Rico, Washington, DC, and Alberta, Canada) and the service provider community (81% response rate) concerning their current and planned use of advanced geospatial technologies. In addition, there is a discussion of the strengths and weaknesses of a  number of the leading technologies, along with how they are being used and applied today. If you are building services that touch on transportation planning or transportation networks in the United States - this is an essential read.

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Learning to Love Volatility

Learning to Love Volatility | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

 Nassim Nicholas Taleb who coined the term black swans writes an interesting article in the Wall Street Journal on the need for systems to be non-fragile in order to cope with unexpected change. Its a good application of complex adaptive systems thinking on shaping possible paths to governance and large scale systems such as banking regulation. Worth reading. Click on the image or the title to learn more.

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A VC: Video Of The Week

A VC: Video Of The Week | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Fred Wilson's AVC.com blog is essential reading in the tech industry. (For those that don't know Fred and his company Union Square Ventures are one of the leading east coast VC's behind the likes of twitter and four square amongst many others). One of the things that makes avc.com essential reading - is not just the blgo posts but also the communities comments that respond, reflect and shape the posts. Today's has a link to Clay Shirkey's Ted talk on government and how development communities such as those around GIT version control - could help with legislative development.  Video is worth watching and the comments are worth reading. Click on the image or the title to learn more.

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Outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease in Guinea: Where Ecology Meets Economy

Outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease in Guinea: Where Ecology Meets Economy | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

The precise factors that result in an Ebola virus outbreak remain unknown, but a broad examination of the complex and interwoven ecology and socioeconomics may help us better understand what has already happened and be on the lookout for what might happen next, including determining regions and populations at risk. Although the focus is often on the rapidity and efficacy of the short-term international response, attention to these admittedly challenging underlying factors will be required for long-term prevention and control.

 
ComplexInsight's insight:

As terrifying and tragic the current Ebola outbreak is - informed discussion on sources, vectors and the interplay of ecology and socioeconomics will be at the heart of finding long term solutions.

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Ebola Virus Antibodies in Fruit Bats, Bangladesh - Volume 19, Number 2—February 2013 - Emerging Infectious Disease journal - CDC

Ebola Virus Antibodies in Fruit Bats, Bangladesh - Volume 19, Number 2—February 2013 - Emerging Infectious Disease journal - CDC | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
To determine geographic range for Ebola virus, we tested 276 bats in Bangladesh. Five (3.5%) bats were positive for antibodies against Ebola Zaire and Reston viruses; no virus was detected by PCR. These bats might be a reservoir for Ebola or Ebola-like viruses, and extend the range of filoviruses to mainland Asia.
ComplexInsight's insight:

As evidence builds that fruit bats may be a vector for the recent ebola outbreak in Western Africa - I was reminded of this paper in CDC's EID journal which found 5 out of 276 (3.5%) tested bats in Bangladesh had antibodies to Ebola. It would be interesting to map ebola outbreaks against natural migration and deforestation paths and see if there is any correlation and to see how other regional antibody presence tests indicate migration as well. The original paper and the EID journal in general are well worth reading. Click image or headling to read more.

 

 

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Canada to give WHO Ebola vaccine

Canada to give WHO Ebola vaccine | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Following the WHO decision that it was ethical to use untested drugs on Ebola patients if it gave them a possibility of recovery, Canada says it will donate up to 1,000 doses of an experimental Ebola vaccine to help battle the disease's outbreak in West Africa.

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The race to contain West Africa's Ebola outbreak (Wired UK)

The race to contain West Africa's Ebola outbreak (Wired UK) | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
Digital volunteers are racing to map regions in West Africa where the Ebola virus, which has a 90 percent fatality rate, continues to spread
ComplexInsight's insight:

The use of OpenStreetMap (OSM) as an unifying geodata system is increasing in humanitarian aid. The current Ebola outbreak in West Africa is a challenge at multiple levels for teams trying to coordinate a response. Due to years of war there are few up to date maps in the region and multiple boundaries mean different groups are collecting data. Digital volunteers creating new OSM entries will be a key asset in enabling health officials to manage the outbreak and hopefully bring things under control.

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Smallpox: Last refuge of an ultimate killer

Smallpox: Last refuge of an ultimate killer | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
If a virus killed millions, why keep it alive? Two places on Earth guard the last vials of smallpox, but Rachel Nuwer finds that they may not be there for long
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Good article from the BBC on Smallpox before the World Health Assembly debate destroying the remaining stores at CDC and Vector.

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'Golden age' of antibiotics 'set to end'

'Golden age' of antibiotics 'set to end' | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

We cannot say we weren't warned. The growing threat of antibiotic resistant organisms is once again in the spotlight. Prof Jeremy Farrar, the new head of Britain's biggest medical research charity the Wellcome Trust said it was a "truly global issue". In his first major interview since taking up his post, Prof Farrar told BBC Radio 4's Today programme that the golden age of antibiotics could come to an end unless action is taken

ComplexInsight's insight:

Prof. Farrar's comments echo those of England's Chief Medical Officer - Sally Davies and the US's Center for Disease Control. As the BBC report shows - warnings regarding the state of anti-biotic effectiveness and bacterial resistance and potential impact started occuring in government circles in the mid 1990's. The World Health Assembly of the WHO will discuss the issue in May 2014. 

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Escaping the poverty trap: modeling the interplay between economic growth and the ecology of infectious disease

The dynamics of economies and infectious disease are inexorably linked: economic well-being influences health (sanitation, nutrition, treatment capacity, etc.) and health influences economic well-being (labor productivity lost to sickness and disease). Often societies are locked into ``poverty traps'' of poor health and poor economy. Here, using a simplified coupled disease-economic model with endogenous capital growth we demonstrate the formation of poverty traps, as well as ways to escape them. We suggest two possible mechanisms of escape both motivated by empirical data: one, through an influx of capital (development aid), and another through changing the percentage of GDP spent on healthcare. We find that a large influx of capital is successful in escaping the poverty trap, but increasing health spending alone is not. Our results demonstrate that escape from a poverty trap may be possible, and carry important policy implications in the world-wide distribution of aid and within-country healthcare spending.

 

Escaping the poverty trap: modeling the interplay between economic growth and the ecology of infectious disease
Georg M. Goerg, Oscar Patterson-Lomba, Laurent Hébert-Dufresne, Benjamin M. Althouse

http://arxiv.org/abs/1311.4079


Via Complexity Digest, Eugene Ch'ng
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New Louisville Open Data Policy Insists Open By Default is the Future - Sunlight Foundation Reporting Group (blog)

New Louisville Open Data Policy Insists Open By Default is the Future - Sunlight Foundation Reporting Group (blog) | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
Sunlight Foundation Reporting Group (blog) New Louisville Open Data Policy Insists Open By Default is the Future Sunlight Foundation Reporting Group (blog) On Tuesday, October 15, 2013, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer announced the signing of an open...
ComplexInsight's insight:

Interesting to see cities beginning to adopt open data policies as default. Recent open data competitions in places like New York are helping create awareness of the possibilities of using openly available data, mobile etc for innovative apps and improved city planning and governance. Looking forward to see what Louisville's decision generates.

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What's an Economist to Do Without Government Data? - Wall Street Journal (blog)

What's an Economist to Do Without Government Data? - Wall Street Journal (blog) | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
Wall Street Journal (blog)
What's an Economist to Do Without Government Data?
Wall Street Journal (blog)
What's the economist's equivalent of filling up a bathtub before a storm? Downloading data ahead of a shutdown.
ComplexInsight's insight:

An interesting side effect of the US government shutdown is to highlight the role of Government data feeds in a variety of settings. Interesting blog post and amusing comment from wall street journal.

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South African Riots: Repercussion of the Global Food Crisis and US Drought

High and volatile global food prices have led to food riots and played a critical role in triggering the Arab Spring revolutions in recent years. The severe drought in the US in the summer of 2012 led to a new increase in food prices. Through the fall, they remained at a threshold above which the riots and revolutions had predominantly occurred. Global prices at this level create conditions where an exacerbating local circumstance can trigger unrest. Global corn (maize) prices reached new highs, and countries that depend mostly on maize are more likely to experience high local food prices and associated pressures toward social unrest. Here we analyze the conditions in South Africa, which is a heavily maize-dependent country. Coinciding with increased consumer food indices this summer, massive labor strikes in mining and agriculture have led to the greatest single incident of social violence since the fall of apartheid in 1994. Worker demands for dramatic pay increases reflect that their wages have not kept up with drastic increases in the prices of necessities, especially food. Without attention to the global food price situation, more incidents of food-based social instability are likely to arise. Other countries that have manifested food-related protests and riots in 2012 include Haiti and Argentina. Moreover, these cases of unrest are just the most visible symptom of widespread suffering of poor populations worldwide due to elevated food prices. Policy decisions that would directly impact food prices are decreasing the conversion of maize to ethanol in the US, and reimposing regulations on commodity futures markets to prevent excessive speculation, which we have shown causes bubbles and crashes in these markets. Absent such policy actions, governments and companies should track and mitigate the impact of high and volatile food prices on citizens and employees.

South African Riots: Repercussion of the Global Food Crisis and US Drought
Yavni Bar-Yam, Marco Lagi, Yaneer Bar-Yam

http://arxiv.org/abs/1307.5268

See Also: http://www.technologyreview.com/view/517396/south-africa-riots-and-the-price-of-food/ ;


Via Complexity Digest
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Worth reading.

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Federal Agency Contracting Opportunities and Congress to be Focus of MAPPS Federal Programs Conference - Directions Magazine

Federal Agency Contracting Opportunities and Congress to be Focus of MAPPS Federal Programs Conference - Directions Magazine | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it
Directions Magazine, the first regularly published online news magazine covering gis and geospatial technology.
ComplexInsight's insight:

A double-header luncheon session on implementation of the recently-enacted MAP-21 Act, featuring senior officials of the Federal Highway Administration (FHwA) and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), will highlight the annual MAPPS (www.mapps.org) Federal Programs Conference opening on Tuesday, March 12 in Washington, DC. The conference will include presentations by Federal agencies, members of Congress, and visits to the U.S. House and Senate by MAPPS membersMAPPS member firm principals will hear presentations by Federal agency officials on their programs, budgets, and requirements for acquisition of geospatial services, data and products from the private sector that are on the horizon. The association also hosts a series of liaison meetings with key agencies, featuring small group discussions between agencies and the private sector on issues affecting the relationship between government and private geospatial firms.

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Big Data Problem Plagues Government Agencies

Big Data Problem Plagues Government Agencies | Complex Insight  - Understanding our world | Scoop.it

Government agencies are collecting vast amounts of data, but they're struggling just to store it, let alone analyze it to improve efficiency, accuracy and forecasts. On average, government agencies store 1.61 petabytes of data, but expect to be storing 2.63 petabytes within the next two years. These data include: reports from other government agencies at various levels, reports generated by field staff, transactional business data, scientific research, imagery/video, Web interaction data and reports filed by non-government agencies. While government agencies collect massive amounts of data, MeriTalk's report found that only 60 percent of IT professionals say their agency analyzes the data collected, and less than 40 percent say their agencies use the data to make strategic decisions. That includes U.S. Department of Defense and intelligence agencies, which on average are even farther behind than civilian agencies when it comes to Big Data. While 60 percent of civilian agencies are exploring how Big Data could be brought to bear on their work, only 42 percent of DoD/intel agencies are doing the same. Click on the image or the title to learn more.

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