Conference Contributors

 

Chairs

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Niall Boyce, Editor, The Lancet Psychiatry, London, UK.

I trained in medicine at Oxford University and subsequently on the University College London psychiatry rotation. I joined The Lancet as a Senior Editor in 2010 before moving on to The Lancet Psychiatry in 2013. My interests include suicide research, trauma, old age psychiatry, and social and transcultural aspects of mental health.


Vikram Patel, Professor of Global Health and Social Medicine in the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School, USA.

He is an Adjunct Professor and Joint Director of the Centre for Chronic Conditions and Injuries at the Public Health Foundation of India, Honorary Professor at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (where he co-founded the Centre for Global Mental Health in 2008), and is a co-founder of Sangath, an Indian NGO which won the MacArthur Foundation’s International Prize for Creative and Effective Institutions in 2008 and the WHO Public Health Champion of India award in 2016. He is a Fellow of the UK's Academy of Medical Sciences and has served on several WHO expert and Government of India committees. His work on the burden of mental disorders, their association with poverty and social disadvantage, and the use of community resources for the delivery of interventions for their prevention and treatment has been recognized by the Chalmers Medal (Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, UK), the Sarnat Medal (US National Academy of Medicine), an Honorary Doctorate from Georgetown University, the Pardes Humanitarian Prize (the Brain & Behaviour Research Foundation), an Honorary OBE from the UK Government and the Posey Leadership Award (Austin College). He also works in the areas of child development and adolescent health. He was listed in TIME Magazine’s 100 most influential persons of the year in 2015.


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Matthew Shaw, BBC News Editor, London, UK & 2015-16 Knight-Wallace Fellows, University of Michigan, USA.

My interests include mental health and workplace wellness.


David Stillwell, Lecturer in big data analytics and quantitative social science at Cambridge Judge Business School, UK, and Deputy Director of the Psychometrics Centre. His research uses machine learning methods to measure psychological individual differences from large datasets of digital behaviour footprints collected from millions of individuals.


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Jyotsana Aggarwal, co-founder and CEO of Touchkin, India.

Touchkin is a health-tech startup which uses artificial intelligence to provide behavioral health support. Jo has been the Managing Director of Pearson Learning Solutions in the UK and a part of the founding team of Silatech, a non-profit focused on youth empowerment in conflict zones in the Arab world. Her work on mobile employability post Arab-spring helped connect over a million young people to skills and jobs, and won the Silver at the Stevie Awards, as well as the Global Telecom Business Innovation award in 2013. She was recognized by the eLearning Center in the UK as one of the top three global thought leaders in education technology.

Jo is Board of Head Held High, a Trustee of the Rural Edge Trust, and an advisor to employability startups Edureka and Aspiring Minds. She has also served as an expert advisor to McKinsey & Co and National Skills Development Council.  

Jo holds a bachelor’s degree in technology from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi and an MBA from the Indian Institute of Management, Lucknow.


Ricardo Araya, Professor of Global Mental Health at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology, and Neuroscience and Director of the Centre for Global Mental Health at King’s College London, UK.

My field of expertise is in the development and implementation of simple and affordable interventions to treat mental disorders, particularly in resource-poor settings. Among these initiatives, I developed a model of care to treat common mental disorders, which has been used and adapted in many settings. Two of these initiatives are particularly worth noting as they led to implementation at a large scale. The first test of this model was undertaken in Chile. This successful randomized controlled trial paved the way to the introduction of the first National Depression Treatment Programme in Primary Care in Chile (Araya et al., 2003, Lancet; Araya et al., 2009, Lancet), which is the largest (proportional to the population) programme of this type in the world. More recently a successful trial of a primary care-based intervention to help people with common mental disorders in Zimbabwe (Chibanda et al., 2016, JAMA) has been scaled-up to all clinics in Harare. As far as I am aware of, these are two of the few, if not the only, examples of scaled-up programmes in mental health over the last 10 years in low-and-middle income countries. The model of care we developed has been adapted and replicated in several other countries. I have and continue to work in many other countries including Brazil, India, Nigeria, Peru, Lebanon, Guatemala, Colombia, Uganda, Tanzania, and others. Several of my projects involve the use of technological platforms to support health workers delivering mental health interventions. For instance, in Brazil and Peru we are testing an integrated technological platform to manage chronic diseases and in Chile we are testing a game platform to strengthen basic psychological skills of young children. Besides my work as a researcher, I have a leading role in two major initiatives to increase mental research capacity in Africa and Latin America. 


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Christina Athanasopoulou, PhD in Health Sciences, University of Turku, Finland | 2017 YTILI Fellow, USA. 

Christina's research interests include: quality of online health information, eHealth literacy, online mental illness stigma and social media. Her PhD dissertation 'eHealth and People with Schizophrenia Spectrum Disorders' explored schizophrenia-related online health information, investigated eHealth use among adults with SSD in Finland and Greece, and compared the country group. Her latest research focus is knowledge translation via videos.

In addition to her research, Christina is involved in social entrepreneurship societies and activities, with interest in knowledge translation of mental health research, and the use of social media to educate about mental health. Christina strongly believes that creative use of technology can easily educate, motivate and engage users to promote their health, empower them, and fight against mental illness stigma. 


Niranjan Bidargaddi, Associate Professor of Personal Health Informatics, Psychiatry, Flinders University, Australia

Niranjan Bidargaddi has a background in developing information technology solutions for health. He is currently leading a multidisciplinary personal health informatics group, which is studying ways to turning personal technologies and personal data into health and wellness services. His research interests include m-health, real time monitoring, interactive care, decision support tools, applied machine learning. He previously led the Mental Health Informatics Research Unit at Country Health SA LHN, which resulted in Mental Health Observatory, a cross-disciplinary collaboration to leverage data in mental health care, Young and Well Towns project in collaboration with Reachout (www.reachout.com) to study the role of technology for young adults mental health and wellbeing. At SAHMRI Mind and Brain he is developing a Digital phenotyping platform, to collect high resolution behavioural markers from naturalistic setting and methodologies to analyze it with genetic and biomarkers. During 2007-2009, he was a CSIRO Postdoctoral Fellow at the Australian e-Health Research Centre where his research into mobile physiological and behavioral monitoring applications led to the development and trialing of a home-based cardiac rehabilitation care in QLD Health. He is also the founding member and Co-director of goACT Pty Ltd, an Australian Health Information Technology startup that received seed funding from Commericialization Australia, specializing in developing internet and mobile applications to deliver evidence based interventions and improving communication between patients and clinicians.


Alison Cameron, Mental Health survivor, activist, speaker and citizen journalist, London, UK.

Alison is a graduate in Russian who ran projects mainly in the countries most affected by the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. Her career was cut short when she was diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder after her colleagues were killed during her work. The consequences included substance misuse, homelessness, multiple admissions to hospital and identity loss. She resolved early on to put her experiences to good use and in the process started to reconnect with the assets that being a passive recipient of care had frozen. A turning point in her recovery was discovering the power of social media to make her voice heard in places from which she had become excluded. She went on to start her own consultancy after a 17 year “career break” and now advises NHS, housing, and social care organisations on how to work in genuinely equal partnership with citizens. She teaches, writes, speaks at conferences and creates training and development workshops. In 2014, the Health Service Journal named her as one of 50 Inspirational Women in Health largely due to Twitter nominations!


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Amy Chandler, Chancellor's Fellow, School of Health in Social Science, University of Edinburgh, UK.

Amy is a sociologist, and Chancellor's Fellow in Health, through Arts, Design and Humanities in the School of Health in Social Science, University of Edinburgh. Her research uses qualitative methods to examine the ways in which mental health and drug use are experienced, and how these experiences are shaped by social and cultural contexts. Her first book, Self-injury, Medicine and Society: Authentic Bodies was published in 2016.


Glen Coppersmith, PhD, Founder & CEO, Qntfy, USA.

Glen is the founder and CEO of Qntfy (pronounced “quantify”), technology solutions provider bridging data science and human behavior. We make complex psychological and behavioral data accessible, scalable and actionable for individuals and organizations.

Qntfy’s mission is to scale therapeutic impact by empowering people and their care network with data science and technology. Qntfy brings a deep understanding of the underlying technology and an appreciation for the human processes in the mental healthcare system that these technologies need to fit in for major impact. Qntfy, in addition to providing analytic and software solutions, considers it a core mission to push the fundamental and applied research at the intersection of mental health and technology. Qntfy built the data donation site OurDataHelps.org to gather and curate the datasets needed to drive mental health research, working closely with the suicide prevention community. Qntfy was also 2015 Foundry Cup grand prize winner – a design competition seeking innovative approaches to diagnosing and treating PTSD. Qntfy currently works with DARPA designing beyond state-of-the-art data science. 

Prior to founding Qntfy, Glen was the first full-time research scientist at the Human Language Technology Center of Excellence at Johns Hopkins University where he joined in 2008. His research has focused on the creation and application of statistical pattern recognition techniques to large disparate data sets for addressing challenges of national importance. Oftentimes, the data of interest was human language content and associated metadata. Glen has shown particular acumen for enabling inference tasks that bring together diverse and noisy data. His work spans from principled exploratory data analysis, anomaly detection, graph theory, statistical inference and visualization.

Glen has diverged from the traditional academic path, taking algorithms from the ivory tower and applying them to real world problems on real world data (and the unruly nature of such data). This means that his approach to challenges encompasses the entire ecosystem in which a piece of technology is meant to exist and assist. He is capable of understanding and improving technology and human processes alike.

Glen earned his Bachelors in Computer Science and Cognitive Psychology in 2003, a Masters in Psycholinguistics in 2005, and his Doctorate in Neuroscience in 2008, all from Northeastern University. As this suggests, his interests and knowledge are broad, from computer science and statistics to biology and psychology.


Chris Gibbons, National Institute of Health Research Fellow at Cambridge Centre for Health Services Research and Director of Health Assessment and Innovation at The Psychometrics Centre, University of Cambridge, UK.

My current work focuses both on assessing the impact of interventions which seek to improve processes and outcomes of care using patient-reported assessment measures and more fundamental research to develop new assessment methods and modalities to enhance patient care. This latter involves the application of computer adaptive testing, tailored feedback, and machine learning techniques to improve the accuracy, feasibility, and effectiveness of patient-reported assessments. 

At The Psychometrics Centre, I manage projects and training courses related to modern psychometrics, big data, machine learning, and data visualisation. I assist with the development of Concerto as a tool to create and deploy patient-reported assessments across health services worldwide. 


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Alex Goforth, Programme Lead, CYP IAPT, London and South East of England. 

CYP IAPT is a national programme of service transformation, which will have 100% geographical coverage by 2018.  The London & South East Collaborative includes over 110 services across the region.  Member of the national CYP IAPT Collaboratives Group, national HEE CWP Steering Group, etc. Has been leading a series of Digital Hackathons for accelerating uptake of digital technologies in mental health services for children and young people over the past 18months.  A qualified Programme and Project Manager, and holds an MA and PGDip in Psychoanalytic Studies from the Tavistock.


David Gratzer, Attending Psychiatrist and Physician-in-Charge of Inpatient Services, Department of Psychiatry, Scarborough and Rouge Hospital, & Assistant Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, Canada.

Dr. Gratzer is a clinician with inpatient and outpatient obligations. He is active in teaching, and is an award-winning educator. His research focuses on using technology to improve access to mental health services. His current projects include Internet-assisted CBT for adults, as well as Internet-assisted mindfulness for cancer patients.

He is the author of book chapters and papers on e-therapies, including Canada’s first review paper on iCBT, published in CMAJ (cover paper for 1 March 2016 issue). He serves on two journal editorial boards, and has informally advised government, as well as the Mental Health Commission of Canada.

Dr. Gratzer’s e-therapy work has been awarded a “leading practice” designation by Accreditation Canada (2016), and won the Award of Excellence in Mental Health and Quality Improvement from the Canadian College of Health Leaders (2017).

He blogs on psychiatry at wwwdavidgratzer.com.


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Jennifer Guadagno, PhD, Compassion Research Lead, Facebook, San Francisco Bay Area, USA.

I'm passionate about understanding and implementing evidence-based, sustainable, and measurable ways to support people.

I've spent the past 9 years as a researcher understanding the best ways to support people -- the first 5 years getting my PhD in Psychology from Duke where I studied the effects of mindfulness on wellbeing, and the most recent 4 years at Facebook leading research for our Compassion Team and suicide prevention product.

I use qualitative and quantitative research methods to understand people's needs, work with cross-functional teams and experts to build out and implement support experiences, and use data-driven methods to define and measure their success.


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Mark Hemsley, Technical Lead, The Anna Freud Centre, London, UK

Mark is a programmer and technical architect by background, and has had a mix of experience working across commercial and public sector projects. In recent years he has been working with The Anna Freud National Center for children and families, and the London and south east CYP-IAPT collaborative to bring the innovations and learning from the technical sector into children and young people’s wellbeing services. Outside of work, Mark is passionate about ensuring that people from all backgrounds have opportunities to learn how to code, and to put those skills into job opportunities.


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Tom Insel, President & Co-Founder, Mindstrong Health, California, USA.

Dr Tom Insel is a neuroscientist and psychiatrist. He was previously at Verily Life Sciences (formerly Google Life Sciences) in December 2015, and he was Director of the National Institute of Mental Health at the NIH from 2002 to 2015. At NIMH he brought the power of genomics and neuroscience to the study of serious mental illness, he launched the Research Domain Criteria project to transform diagnostics and he led an overhaul of the clinical trials program to focus on targets and mechanisms. His research interests have spanned clinical studies of obsessive compulsive disorder, neurobiological studies of the role of oxytocin and vasopressin in complex social behaviors, and global mental health. He received his BA and MD degrees from the Boston University and completed his residency in psychiatry at UCSF. Dr Insel is a member of the National Academy of Medicine and has received numerous honors including an honorary degree from the University of Edinburgh.


Philip Klassen, Vice-President, Medical Affairs, Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences & Assistant Professor, Departments of Psychiatry and Medicine, University of Toronto, Canada.

Administratively, Dr. Klassen is responsible, in partnership with the Senior Management Team and inter-professional colleagues at Ontario Shores, for quality improvement, utilization management, medical staff evaluation, recruitment and retention, and education. Dr. Klassen is the executive sponsor of the hospital’s implementation of clinical practice guidelines, and quality-based procedures, and was Co-Chair of the provincial QBP expert panel, and implementation panel, for schizophrenia.

Academically, Dr. Klassen has written and presented on clinical and quality-related topics, and topics in forensic psychiatry. He has been awarded for course design, and remains an active teacher at the undergraduate and graduate levels. He has a special interest in global mental health and has led the creation of the first mental health and diversion court in Africa.

Dr. Klassen is also a practicing forensic psychiatrist, and works in the Traumatic Stress Clinic at Ontario Shores. Clinically, Dr. Klassen is active in the areas of forensic risk assessment and management, clinical sexology, assessment of fitness for duty, assessment of trauma outcome, and other forensic domains. He has also been an external reviewer for provincial and hospital programs.


Desmond Patton, Assistant Professor, Columbia School of Social Work, Director of the SAFE lab, & Faculty Affiliate of the Social Intervention Group and the Data Science Institute, New York City, USA.

His research utilizes qualitative and computational data collection methods to examine how and why youth and gang violence, trauma, grief and identity are expressed on social media and the real world impact they have on well-being for low-income youth of color.

His current research projects examine: 1) How gang involved youth conceptualize threats on social media; 2) The extent to which social media shapes and facilitates youth and gang violence 3) Developing an online tool for detecting aggression in social media posts in partnership with the Data Science Institute at Columbia.

Dr. Patton’s research on Internet Banging has been discussed on several media outlets to include the New York Times, Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun Times, USA Today, NPR, Vice News, ABC News, and was most recently cited in an Amici Curae Brief submitted to the United States Supreme Court in the Elonis vs United States case which examined the issues of interpreting threats on social media. Before coming to Columbia in July of 2015, Dr. Patton was an assistant professor at the University of Michigan School of Social Work and School of Information. He received a BA in Anthropology and Political Science, with honors, from the University of North Carolina- Greensboro, MSW from the University of Michigan School of Social Work and PhD in Social Service Administration from the University of Chicago.


John Pestian, PhD, MBA, Director, Computational Medicine Centre & Professor of Pediatrics, Psychiatry and Biomedical Informatics, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Centre, University of Cincinnati, USA. 

Dr. Pestian's lab (pestianlab.cchmc.org) focuses on developing advanced technology for the care of neuropsychiatric illness. Using artificial intelligence, his team integrates analyses of trait and state characteristics for early identification of both neurological and psychiatric illness. His lab developed and implemented an automated, electronic health record surveillance system that processes clinician notes to identify epilepsy surgery candidates up to two years earlier than traditional approaches. The lab also focuses on earlier identification of individuals at risk of suicide, depression, and bipolar and anxiety disorders using verbal and non-verbal language.

Current projects include fusion of linguistic, acoustic, and visual cues that are being tested in selected Cincinnati Public Schools and Cincinnati Children’s clinics. Dr. Pestian and his lab have 18 issued patents and he is active in the entrepreneurial community. This activity has yielded over 500 jobs and one-half billion in revenue have been created. One invention, Processing Text With Domain-Specific Spreading Activation Methods, is a platform for neuropsychiatric research. Another, Optimization and Individualization of Medication Selection and Dosing, has been used for optimal mental health drug selection on more than 420,000 people. He and his colleagues have published more than 80 peer reviewed publications that focus on applied and translational sciences apropos to artificial intelligence.

He currently mentors five junior faculty, of which three have recently received funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Dr. Pestian is an alumni of the NIH’s standing Study Section, Biomedical Library and Informatics Review Committee (BLIRC) of the National Library of Medicine, as well as the National Institute for Mental Health’s, Pathway to Independence (K99) study section.


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Nick Pickles, Head of Public Policy and Government, UK and Israel, at Twitter.

A policy, campaigning and communications specialist with a wide range of experience in public relations, crisis management, campaigning and digital marketing. 

Experienced both managing communications and leading public affairs and media activity, I bring a creative approach to communications and a passion for innovation. I have spoken at conferences around the world, given evidence to the UK and European Parliament and made numerous media appearances in print and on broadcast. 

The huge transformation technology has brought to society, the challenges that poses and the increasingly diverse ways people communicate and share information are issues that interest me, as well as the future of regulation and foreign policy in an internet age. 

I am also an internationally published photographer, offering a visual dimension to communications and ensuring free entry to Glastonbury since 2008!

I'm also proud to be a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.


Eric Rice, Associate Professor, University of Southern California in the Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work, California, USA.

He is the founding co-director of the USC Center for Artificial Intelligence in Society, a center which is a joint venture with the Viterbi School of Engineering.  Dr. Rice received his PhD in 2002 from Stanford University. He is an expert in social network and community-based research.  His primary focus is on youth experiencing homelessness.  Since 2002, Dr. Rice has worked closely with homeless youth providers in Los Angeles and in many other communities across the country to develop novel solutions to end youth homelessness and support young people across the nation who experience homelessness. 


Jennifer Russell, Chief Operating Officer at TalkLife, UK.

Details coming soon.


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Sumaiya Omar, COO, HashtagOurStories, London, UK.

Sumaiya Omar is a social media consultant and founder of social video company HashtagOurStories. She specializes in outsourcing video post-production services to emerging markets, reducing costs for media houses and easing digital workflows so creatives can focus on telling better stories.

Sumaiya has spent the last five years experimenting with emerging news platforms like Snapchat and Instagram in South Africa, India and the UK and has conducted mobile journalism workshops with broadcasters across Europe.


Jane Shears, Head of Social Work, St Andrew's Healthcare, Northamptonshire, UK.

Details coming soon.


Joanna Sleigh, Applied Media Anthropoligst, Freie Universität Berlin Freie Universität Berlin, Germany.

Joanna Sleigh received a BA at the University of Sydney specialising in Digital Cultures and Art History. She worked as Communications Coordinator at Australia’s leading multi-arts centre Carriageworks, as a graphic designer for Indonesian creatives, and has worked for crowdfunding company Pozible in both the United States and Australia.


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Duncan Stephenson, Director of External Affairs, Royal Society of Public Health, London, UK.

As Director of External Affairs for the Royal Society for Public Health, Duncan has responsibility for developing the organisation’s voice on public health issues.  Duncan has been behind many of RSPH’s new policies including: working with young people and Slimming World on developing a childhood obesity plan; campaigning for alcohol calorie labelling; Health on the High Street - a national campaign to make High Streets more health promoting; and most recently drug policy reform, and calls for the introduction of activity-equivalence calorie labelling for food and drink.

Duncan has over ten years’ experience in campaigns, media relations and public affairs working mainly on health and wellbeing issues. Prior to joining RSPH, Duncan looked after parliamentary and stakeholder relations for the Care Quality Commission. As Head of External Affairs at the YMCA, Duncan set up the All Party Parliamentary Group on Body Image and was instrumental in the Campaign for Body Confidence, now the BeReal Campaign.  This included a project exploring male body image anxiety. He has previously worked for industry and at Unilever UK supported their response to the Public Health White Paper, covering issues such as food labelling, marketing and advertising to children and product reformulation. Outside of work, Duncan is a volunteer for OCD Action and a trustee of the People’s Health Trust.


Sir Simon Wessely, MA BM BCh MSc MD FRCP FRCPsych FMedSci FKC, London, UK.

Sir Simon Wessely is the President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists. He is also the Regius Professor of Psychiatry and Co-Director, King’s Centre for Military Health Research and Academic Department of Military Mental Health, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King’s College London.  He is a clinical liaison psychiatrist, with a particular interest in unexplained symptoms and syndromes.  He has responsibility for undergraduate and postgraduate psychiatry training, and is particularly committed to sharing his enthusiasm for clinical psychiatry with medical students. He also remains research active, continuing to publish on many areas of psychiatry, psychological treatments, epidemiology and military health.

Born and educated in Sheffield, he studied medical sciences and history of art at Trinity Hall, Cambridge, and then finished his medical training at University College Oxford, graduating in 1981. He obtained his medical membership in Newcastle, before moving to London’s Maudsley Hospital  to train in psychiatry, where he also obtained a Master’s and Doctorate in epidemiology. His doctoral thesis was on crime and schizophrenia. Professor Wessely has been a consultant liaison psychiatrist at King’s College Hospital and the Maudsley Hospital since 1991, where he set up the first NHS service for sufferers from chronic fatigue syndrome.

He became Director of the Chronic Fatigue Research Unit at King’s in 1994 and of the Gulf War Illness Research Unit in 1996, which then became the King’s Centre for Military Health Research, a unique collaboration between the IoP and the KCL Department of War Studies, in 2003. Its flagship project, a large-scale ongoing study of the health and wellbeing of the UK Armed Forces, has had a direct impact on public policy and on forms of treatment and help for Service personnel. He is Civilian Consultant Advisor in Psychiatry to the British Army in which capacity he has visited services in Bosnia, Iraq and Afghanistan. He is a trustee of Combat Stress, the principal UK charity for veterans with mental health problems, and his contributions to veterans’ charities include cycling (slowly) seven times to Paris to raise funds for service personnel in need.

He established the first clinical trials unit in this country dedicated to mental health, and is a Foundation Senior Investigator of the National Institute for Health Research, and Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences. In 2012 he was awarded the first Nature “John Maddox Prize” for Standing Up for Science, and was knighted in the 2013 New Year’s Honours List.  In 2014 he was elected as the next President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists.

Professor Wessely has over 750 original publications, with a particular emphasis on the boundaries of medicine and psychiatry, unexplained symptoms and syndromes, military health, population reactions to adversity, epidemiology, history and other fields.  He has co authored a text book on chronic fatigue syndrome, a history of military psychiatry and a book on randomised controlled trials, although none are best sellers.  He is active in public engagement activities, speaking regularly on radio, TV and at literary and science festivals as well as writing columns for many national newspapers.


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Ramakant Vempati, co-founder of Touchkin, India.

Ramakant is a data scientist with over 20 years of experience in impact investing & operations at the world’s most respected organisations.  Earlier, Ramakant worked at Goldman Sachs International in London as a COO supporting a multi-billion-dollar capital markets business; and at Barclays Capital in their global strategy team. Ramakant has also served as a senior advisor to a UN-World Bank backed entity, building a social impact investment portfolio across 11 countries. Earlier, he was a management consultant with Booz & Co in London. Ramakant started his career as part of the TAS, where he worked in the Tata group’s venture incubator. His work has won professional excellence awards at Booz & Co and the Thomson-Reuters Ethical Finance Innovation award. He has spoken on analytics, impact evaluation and social investment at forums including the ILO in Geneva and UC Berkeley. Born and brought up in India, Ramakant has lived and worked in 18 countries and four continents. A graduate from Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur, he holds an MBA from London Business School where he was a merit scholar.


Xingjie Wei, Assistant Professor, Information Systems, Decisions & Operations, School of Management, University of Bath, UK

I obtained a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Warwick. Before joining the SoM, I worked as a Research Associate in the Psychometrics Centre in the Judge Business School at University of Cambridge. I have been working in Computer Science, Psychology and Business School departments doing interdisciplinary research investigating the relationship between human factors and computational techniques. My work focuses on analysing and predicting behavioural and psychological traits (e.g., personality) of humans from their social network data (e.g., text, image, activities, etc), which can be applied to improve business practice in marketing and management.


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Jyotsana Aggarwal, co-founder and CEO of Touchkin, India.

Touchkin is a health-tech startup which uses artificial intelligence to provide behavioral health support. Jo has been the Managing Director of Pearson Learning Solutions in the UK and a part of the founding team of Silatech, a non-profit focused on youth empowerment in conflict zones in the Arab world. Her work on mobile employability post Arab-spring helped connect over a million young people to skills and jobs, and won the Silver at the Stevie Awards, as well as the Global Telecom Business Innovation award in 2013. She was recognized by the eLearning Center in the UK as one of the top three global thought leaders in education technology.

Jo is Board of Head Held High, a Trustee of the Rural Edge Trust, and an advisor to employability startups Edureka and Aspiring Minds. She has also served as an expert advisor to McKinsey & Co and National Skills Development Council.  

Jo holds a bachelor’s degree in technology from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi and an MBA from the Indian Institute of Management, Lucknow.


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Victoria Betton, Founder and Director of mHabitat

mHabitat is an NHS hosted organisation which supports people-centred digital innovation in health and care. She is a qualified social worker with over twenty year’s experience in local government, third sector and the NHS. She has Masters degrees in Women’s Studies, Social Work and a Diploma in Public Sector Relations. Her doctoral research was on the theme of mental health and online social networks. You can find her blog at www.codesigndigitalhealth.co.uk She is involved in steering HealthTech Women North and Digital Leaders Y&H and is an Improvement Fellow at the Y&H Improvement Academy. You can find her on Twitter @VictoriaBetton and her Pets as Therapy dog Bibi on Instagram at bibithepatdog.


Miriam Cohen, Psychology PhD candidate, University of Exeter & University of Bristol

Miriam Cohen is a Psychology PhD candidate working between the University of Exeter and the University of Bristol, funded by an ESRC South-West DTC Studentship. Her research investigates neurodisability within the criminal justice system, with a focus on prevalence, and neuropsychological consequences of, traumatic brain injury. This research also investigates the use of digital platforms to deliver neurorehabilitative interventions in incarcerated settings. 


Diane Curry, OBE, Chief Executive Officer, Partners of Prisoners and Families Support Group (POPS), UK.

Diane Curry has worked for the charity for 21 years. Diane has vast experience in working within the Voluntary Sector of the Criminal Justice System and is also a qualified social worker. POPS was founded by families with experience of supporting somebody in custody and continues to be needs-led in its approach. Diane has been at the forefront of promoting the needs of offenders’ families and encouraging an innovative response to the provision of services for them that are reflective of their needs.

Diane has made outstanding contributions to the Criminal Justice Sector and is a significant pioneer and remarkable leader with regards to her work with offenders’ families and Black and Minority Ethnic Offenders.  In 2002 Diane developed and implemented the Black Prisoners Support Project (BPSP) group work programs and has had a pivotal role in setting up the charity National Body of Black Prisoner Support Group now the Coalition for Racial Justice (CRJUK). In 2006 Diane received an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list, in recognition for her outstanding work in this area.

In 2013 Diane was invited to become an independent scrutiny panel member for the Greater Manchester Police and Crime Commissioner and is now a member of the GMP public protest panel and the AGMA Executive Steering Group.  Diane also chairs the Greater Manchester BME Roundtable and represents POPS as a member of the Criminal Justice Alliance.  Diane is also a member of the national RR3 (Reducing Re offending Third Sector Advisory Group)

Diane also sits on the following committees: Reducing Reoffending Third Sector Advisory Group (RR3), Greater Manchester Police and Crime Steering Group (PCC), The Farmer Review, The Young Review and is Chair of the BME Roundtable Manchester. Diane is committed to developing the involvement of families in the Prison Reform agenda and for including them in the development of services that may impact upon them.  


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Asmae Doukani, Research Assistant & Research Degree student, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), UK.

Asmae's research interest lies in understanding how technology can be harnessed to increase engagement and access to psychosocial interventions in UK and in low resource settings, globally. Prior to joining LSHTM, Asmae completed a Degree in Psychology and a Masters in Research Methods in Psychology. She has subsequently worked in a range of research, clinical and advocacy roles, gaining experience with individuals who have wide-ranging lived experience of mental distress. Asmae has a keen interest in public engagement, recently coordinating a range of awareness building activities at LSHTM, for WHO’s 2017 World Health Day theme on depression.


William R Frey, Researcher at the Columbia School of Social Work and Coordinator of the SAFE Lab, New York City, USA.

His research interests include race, violence, and social media, specifically white people’s perpetuation of microaggressions, violence, and oppression on and offline. He comes from a social justice education and inter/intragroup dialogue background with an expertise in facilitating critical conversations across difference.

In addition to his work with the SAFE Lab, William is an independent consultant, facilitating workshops around anti-racism, justice, and equity. Before his time at Columbia University, he engaged in critical pedagogy development while working with high school-aged youth to support their learning around group dynamics, power, privilege, oppression, and social justice.


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Alex Goforth, Programme Lead, CYP IAPT, London and South East of England. 

CYP IAPT is a national programme of service transformation, which will have 100% geographical coverage by 2018.  The London & South East Collaborative includes over 110 services across the region.  Member of the national CYP IAPT Collaboratives Group, national HEE CWP Steering Group, etc. Has been leading a series of Digital Hackathons for accelerating uptake of digital technologies in mental health services for children and young people over the past 18months.  A qualified Programme and Project Manager, and holds an MA and PGDip in Psychoanalytic Studies from the Tavistock.


Pattie Gonsalves, Project Coordinator | Public Engagement, PRIDE Project, New Delhi, India.

Pattie works in the areas of arts and mental health to improve health outcomes for adolescents and youth in India. A graduate in global health from the University of Oxford, her diverse background ranging from psychology, development and public health has given her opportunities to serve as a youth consultant to UNICEF and co-found the “Music Basti” project, which connects at-risk children with music and life-skills education. She has also worked with the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD), served as the Head of Institutional Advancement at the Global Music Institute and conducted research in rural Tamil Nadu for Artists Striving to End Poverty (ASTEP). Pattie is presently leading a youth mental health public engagement initiative, "It’s OK To Talk”, at the Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI) in New Delhi. The program aims to engage young Indians in a dialogue about mental health and is set to launch the first adolescent and youth-focused Hindi and English mental health website and social media campaign in April 2017. 


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Mark Hemsley, Technical Lead, The Anna Freud Centre, London, UK.

Mark is a programmer and technical architect by background, and has had a mix of experience working across commercial and public sector projects. In recent years he has been working with The Anna Freud National Center for children and families, and the London and south east CYP-IAPT collaborative to bring the innovations and learning from the technical sector into children and young people’s wellbeing services. Outside of work, Mark is passionate about ensuring that people from all backgrounds have opportunities to learn how to code, and to put those skills into job opportunities.


Fabien Soazandry, Film Director, London, UK.

Fabien Soazandry is a French film Director of Malagache decent. His film work has acclaimed multiple awards including Best Director 2010 BEFTA. Fabien also worked with The Hayward Gallery, as there in house filmmaker at the age of 16, his short films were screened several times at The British Film Institute and won a best story and best picture award. He also worked with BBC as a documentary filmmaker. He worked for Livity as a freelance filmmaker, making corporate and campaign marketing films for a number of companies including Nike, Mindshare, MTV and Sony BMG and for Current TV on a documentary about pop culture in Paris, before setting up his own production company Invincible Frames. Where he has worked for the likes of Channel 4, Accenture, EY and many more. He is also renowned for his paintings, which were recently exhibited at the American Embassy for American black history month. His Art driven approach to film making has enabled him to gain an insight into visual literacy for which he is a strong and passionate advocate for its use in education and medicine

 


Ramakant Vempati, co-founder of Touchkin, India.

Ramakant is a data scientist with over 20 years of experience in impact investing & operations at the world’s most respected organisations.  Earlier, Ramakant worked at Goldman Sachs International in London as a COO supporting a multi-billion-dollar capital markets business; and at Barclays Capital in their global strategy team. Ramakant has also served as a senior advisor to a UN-World Bank backed entity, building a social impact investment portfolio across 11 countries. Earlier, he was a management consultant with Booz & Co in London. Ramakant started his career as part of the TAS, where he worked in the Tata group’s venture incubator. His work has won professional excellence awards at Booz & Co and the Thomson-Reuters Ethical Finance Innovation award. He has spoken on analytics, impact evaluation and social investment at forums including the ILO in Geneva and UC Berkeley. Born and brought up in India, Ramakant has lived and worked in 18 countries and four continents. A graduate from Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur, he holds an MBA from London Business School where he was a merit scholar.


Xingjie Wei, Assistant Professor, Information Systems, Decisions & Operations, School of Management, University of Bath, UK.

I obtained a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Warwick. Before joining the SoM, I worked as a Research Associate in the Psychometrics Centre in the Judge Business School at University of Cambridge. I have been working in Computer Science, Psychology and Business School departments doing interdisciplinary research investigating the relationship between human factors and computational techniques. My work focuses on analysing and predicting behavioural and psychological traits (e.g., personality) of humans from their social network data (e.g., text, image, activities, etc), which can be applied to improve business practice in marketing and management.

 

 CONFERENCE TEAM

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Asmae Doukani, Research Assistant & Research Degree student, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), UK.

I am an Operational Co-ordinator for the Innovation & Strategies for Digital Interventions in Mental Health Conference.

In my research career, I am interested in understanding how technology can be harnessed to increase engagement and access to psychosocial interventions in UK and in low resource settings, globally. Prior to joining LSHTM, I completed a Degree in Psychology and a Masters in Research Methods in Psychology. I subsequently worked in a range of research, clinical and advocacy roles, gaining experience with individuals who have wide-ranging lived experience of mental distress. I have a keen interest in public engagement, recently coordinating a range of awareness building activities at LSHTM, for WHO’s 2017 World Health Day theme on depression.


Becky Inkster, DPhil, Neuroscientist & Advocate for Social Good, London, UK.

I am the Creator of the Innovation & Strategies for Digital Interventions in Mental Health Conference.

I am interested in a lot of stuff.


Bibe Kadir, Social Anthropologist & COO, Educational Consultancy firm, London, UK.

I am the Creative Content Lead for the Innovation & Strategies for Digital Interventions in Mental Health Conference.

In my professional career, I provide advice and consultancy to government and local authorities, organisations and educational bodies. I work on projects and deliver educational programs making engagement and outreach a much easier process for the projects targeted audience. My current passions and works focus on producing workshops and programs, which seek to improve the lives of the patients in mental health care sectors. I create and manage projects alongside courses, which focus on developing the cognitive ability of those affected by the environment, connecting the past life traumas and environment.

 

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