I'm working on preparing to reach out to institutes and organizations that might need our help now or in the future

Our idea here on this platform is to prepare for the worst and help wherever we can.

We reasoned it might be best to first reach out to volunteers, assemble a list of supporting PIs, get talented and well trained people to sign up… allowing us to show some activity and demonstrate that this platform has potential to indeed be useful. I guess we are still in this part of the project (its Friday night, March 20).

Soon, but maybe only after the weekend, we will start reaching out to individuals and organizations that might have data and analysis problems for us… or will do so in case the situation worsens.

Naturally, we would more than happy to prepare this platform for nothing and have ‘wasted’ our time. It would be best for all of us if this pandemic would just blow over. But in all honesty… I think its good to prepare for the worst, isn’t it?

Anyways, this is what I’m doing at the moment and I’d be happy if you comment below all you thoughts and ideas for how we can be better prepared… who we should contact and offer our help… or any other thing you want me to hear.

Best,
Florian

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Hi Florian,

great effort. In my opinion the one thing we are lacking the most is useful data - most data sources gather how many cases there are in different countries, which can be used for nice visualizations but are limited in use for generating hypothesis, guidelines or suggestions.

I have written to the Robert Koch Institute via the contact form and offered help with data analysis - no reply so far. They have the anonymised cell phone usage data set.

Decode iceland does have nice data about testing - but it is difficult to get a message through.

Maybe somebody has some people in their network who could get a message through?

All the best,
Tom

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Hi Tom!

I (and I’m sure many of us) agree with your assessment. Also, thanks a lot for you initiative!
We had also a discussionwith @funkey yesterday (offline, I have to confess) about precisely this point. Any idea for how we can get hold of people/organizations that have data and are willing to publicly or otherwise share it with our communities… please let us know!!!

Best,
Florian

Hi Tom,

Yes, the lack of useful data is certainly a problem right now. Public health institutes and departments are overwhelmed and don’t just reply to individual data requests. I suggest that we offer help collecting, curating, updating, and disseminating datasets for those institutions, instead of just asking for existing datasets. I’m optimistic that we have many volunteers who would be willing to work on that.

It might be a good idea to recruit coordinators as single points of contact to each of those organizations to minimize communication overhead. @jug, you mentioned you are already in contact with the Robert Koch Institute? I can try to establish a link to the US CDC (but happy to get help with that). What other organizations can we contact?

Cheers,
Jan