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Media Advisory: NIH lecture to explore social technologies and their data in predicting and changing health-related behaviors

For Immediate Release:
Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Reading Between the Tweets: Social Technologies for Predicting and Changing Health Behavior

The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH), of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), will present a virtual lecture on November 2, 2021, from 1– 2 p.m. ET. This lecture is the fall 2021 offering in NCCIH’s Integrative Medicine Research Lecture Series. Dr. Sean D. Young, University of California, Irvine, will present his innovative NIH-supported research and discuss the state of the science.

Reading Between the Tweets: Social Technologies for Predicting and Changing Health Behavior
Sean D. Young, Ph.D., M.S.
Executive Director
University of California Institute for Prediction Technology
Associate Professor
Departments of Emergency Medicine and Informatics
University of California, Irvine
Tuesday, November 2, 2021
1–2 p.m. ET

This lecture is open to the public, and registration is not necessary. It will be streamed live and archived at NIH VideoCast and on Facebook Live.

About the Presentation

Social technologies and their associated data are increasingly being used as tools in public health research and practice. Examples include social media, mobile apps, internet searches, and wearable sensors. More than half the world uses social media sites to create, share, and discuss content—often personal and/or medical in nature. Dr. Young will discuss how social technologies and data (e.g., artificial intelligence and data science modeling) are being used to impact public health, and how researchers and health departments/agencies might apply them in public health surveillance/intervention efforts. He will also present his team’s research on how these tools can be employed to predict and change health behaviors, and on implementation-related issues. Studies to be discussed involve populations affected by HIV, mental health and substance use disorders, car crashes, or COVID-19.

About the Speaker

Sean D. Young, Ph.D., M.S., is executive director of the University of California Institute for Prediction Technology and associate professor (split appointment) in the Department of Emergency Medicine, School of Medicine, and the Department of Informatics, Donald Bren School of Information and Computer Sciences, at the University of California, Irvine. His research focuses on (1) using social big data to monitor and predict public health issues and (2) designing and testing technologies to address public health and medical issues among at-risk populations. Dr. Young received his doctorate in psychology and his master’s degrees in psychology and in health services research from Stanford University. His publications include a bestselling book, Stick with It: A Scientifically Proven Process for Changing Your Life—for Good.

About the Series

The NCCIH Integrative Medicine Research Lecture Series ( provides overviews of the current state of research and practice involving complementary health approaches and explores perspectives on the emerging discipline of integrative medicine.  

Media: For members of the media interested in covering any lectures, please contact the NCCIH press office at 301-496-7790 or

To request sign language interpreting services or other reasonable accommodations to participate in this event, contact the NCCIH Clearinghouse at or 1-888-644-6226 5 days before the event.


About the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH):
NCCIH’s mission is to define, through rigorous scientific investigation, the usefulness and safety of complementary and integrative health approaches and their roles in improving health and health care. For additional information, call NCCIH’s Clearinghouse toll free at 1-888-644-6226. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook , and YouTube.

About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation’s medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit