Indiana University's School of Public Health-Bloomington added Associate Professor Marco Ajelli to its Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics on October 1, 2020. Ajelli previously served as a senior research scientist at the Bruno Kessler Foundation's Center for Information and Communication Technology in Trento, Italy.
Just one of several new faculty members at the school, Ajelli is particularly focused on the promotion of evidence-based decision-making in public health. "One of the key practical goals of my research is to put policy makers in the best possible position to make decisions based on quantitative evidence," he explains. "This ranges from providing situational awareness such as during an epidemic, when data are scattered and incomplete, to assessing the possible future evolution of an epidemic, should certain policies be enacted."
Some of Ajelli's research interests include leveraging mathematical and computational modeling to better understand the key determinants which shape the epidemiology of infectious diseases, and using empirical evidence to address public health questions.
"Dr. Ajelli is truly making a difference in public health and he's already making his mark at the school as well," says Dr. Michael Hendryx, Interim Department Chair.
In 2020 alone, Ajelli has had several research papers accepted for publication in academic journals including Science, The Lancet Infectious Diseases, and Nature Communications, among others. He has also been awarded funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE) for two COVID-19 research projects.
"Dr. Ajelli has really hit the ground running," Hendryx continues. "I know he has also made time to assist some of his colleagues by offering technical expertise and discussing possible collaborations. We are certainly fortunate to have him in our ranks."