Eric and Wendy Schmidt Center
Merging biology and machine learning to understand the programs of life
The Eric and Wendy Schmidt Center will enable a new field of interdisciplinary research at the intersection of data science and life science, aimed at improving human health
The Eric and Wendy Schmidt Center brings together a global network of scientists from academia and industry to promote interdisciplinary research between the data and life sciences to transform biology and ultimately improve human health.
Two recent revolutions inspired the creation of the Schmidt Center: the exponential growth and widespread adaptation of data technologies like machine learning and cloud computing, and the dramatic advances in generating massive amounts of data about living systems through next-generation DNA sequencing, single cell genomics, and advanced medical imaging.
Until now, these fields have largely developed in parallel. Their convergence creates a new era of biology, one that will yield a deep understanding of biological processes, with the ultimate aim of improving human health through more powerful disease prevention, diagnosis, and treatment.
The Schmidt Center is co-directed by Caroline Uhler, Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and the Institute for Data, Systems, and Society at MIT and an associate member of the Broad Institute; and Anthony Philippakis, Broad’s chief data officer.
The Center includes collaborators from across the Broad community, including MIT, Harvard, and the Harvard teaching hospitals. It also partners with the pioneering work already underway at Broad, such as the Models, Inference & Algorithms (MIA) Initiative at the Broad and the cross-institutional Machine Learning for Health (ML4H) effort.
The Center is organized around principles of ethics and equity, with researchers focused on engaging underrepresented groups, anticipating outcomes for vulnerable populations, and developing open-source tools that will maximize benefit to all, inclusive of ethnicity, gender, socioeconomic status and more.
A growing list of collaborators beyond the Broad Institute, MIT and Harvard community include:
- Mila (Quebec AI Institute), led by Yoshua Bengio
- European Laboratory for Learning and Intelligent Systems, Tuebingen, led by Bernhard Schoelkopf
- The Alan Turing Institute, directed by Sir Adrian Smith
- Oxford Big Data Institute, directed by Cecilia Lindgren
- Clinicians and researchers at Mayo Clinic and Geisinger
- Biopharmaceutical companies, including Genentech (a member of the Roche Group), AstraZeneca, and Novartis
- Technology and research companies focused on scientific inquiry, including DeepMind, Google Research, and Microsoft
- Mikhail Belkin (UC San Diego), David Blei (Columbia University), Marzyeh Ghassemi (University of Toronto), Jennifer Listgarten (UC Berkeley), Mihaela van der Schaar (Cambridge University)
For questions about the Center, and to work with us, please contact EWSC@broadinstitute.org