Newsletter: October-November 2023

Welcome to the October-November newsletter!

Please contact if you would like to contribute any items to next month’s newsletter!


  1. Special announcements
  2. Jobs and grant opportunities 
  3. Workshops and conferences 
  4. Courses and learning opportunities
  5. Subgroups, working groups, and regional activities
  6. Seminar recap and recordings

  1. Special announcements

AMMnet October 17 Meeting Concluded with Great Success!

It was wonderful to see many AMMnet members at the October 17 meeting in Chicago. Congratulations to all our speakers, panelists, discussion groups, and meeting organizers for a great meeting, and thanks to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation for sponsoring the event!

We look forward to seeing many members again at our next meeting in Kigali, April 18-19 2024 (see below).

AMMnet Monthly Seminar: How can modelling be used in the fight against invasive malaria mosquito, Anopheles stephensi in Africa?
Join us for an exciting seminar with two guest speakers – Courtney Murdock, Department of Entomology at Cornell University and Jeanne Samake, CDC in the Division of Parasitic Diseases and Malaria, Entomology Branch.

  • Date: November 7
  • Time: 15:00 UTC
  • Seminars include live translation to French.
  • Leveraging insights from the An. stephensi urban malaria system in India to better understand urban malaria risk in Africa, presented by Courtney Murdock.
    Courtney is an associate professor in the Department of Entomology at Cornell University. She received her B.S. in Biology (1997-2001) and a Ph.D. in disease ecology in the School of Natural Resources and the Environment (2002-2009) at the University of Michigan. She then received post-doctoral training in the Department of Biology and Entomology at Pennsylvania State University (2009-2014). She joined the faculty as an assistant professor in the Department of Infectious Diseases, College of Veterinary Medicine and the Odum School of Ecology at the University of Georgia (2015-2020) before moving her research program to Cornell in 2020. Human-modified changes to the environment, such as climate and land use change, are occurring at unprecedented rates and are altering the ecological relationships humans, mosquitoes, and their parasites share. This in turn results in changes in the distributions of hosts, their contact rates, the emergence of infectious diseases in new areas, and the seasonality of transmission risk. Murdock’s research group focuses on describing the effects of key environmental variables on mosquito-borne disease transmission by integrating data from laboratory experiments, semi-field experiments, and field studies into mechanistic models to better predict how transmission will respond to future environmental change in a variety of different mosquito-pathogen systems (human malaria – Anopheles stephensi; Aedes – Dengue, Zika viruses; Culex tarsalis – West Nile virus).
  • Incorporating genomic data into environmental models to better predict the invasive Anopheles stephensi adaptation and spread, presented by Jeanne Samake.
    Jeanne is a postdoctoral research fellow at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the Division of Parasitic Diseases and Malaria, Entomology Branch. She earned her Ph.D. in Biology and MPH at Baylor University, where she studied the evolution and dispersal patterns of the invasive malaria vector, Anopheles stephensi, in the Horn of Africa and Yemen. She applies molecular and population genomics approaches to investigate the invasive malaria vector’s evolutionary history, source population, and invasion routes. Her research interests include insecticide resistance mechanisms in An. stephensi and using genotype-environment association models to determine potential climate and environmental factors influencing the invasive An. stephensi local adaptation and spread.

AMMnet Special Event on November 16: Scientific Manuscript Writing Workshop
Hosted by Anna Bershteyn, PhD, Department of Population Health, NYU Grossman School of Medicine

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Save the Date! AMMnet Africa Meeting – Kigali, Rwanda April 18-19, 2024
AMMnet is organizing an in-person event in Kigali, Rwanda. The event will include a mix of talks, discussions and training on various aspects of malaria modeling. 

Limited funding awards will be available for traveling and training. Additional information and registration form will come soon.

Please consider that The Multilateral Initiative on Malaria (MIM Conference) will happen in Kigali, Rwanda from 21st to 27th April, immediately after the AMMnet event, so you can attend both events saving traveling costs.

8th MIM Society Conference: 21-27 April 2023 Kigali, Rwanda
The MIM 2024 theme seeks to enhance grassroots mobilization to end malaria through Investment of resources, an innovation driven approach and collaboration. 

MIM was established in 1997 as an alliance of international organizations and individuals with the shared goal of strengthening and sustaining collaboration through research and training and raising the capability of malaria endemic countries in Africa to conduct research to develop and improve tools for malaria control. MIM 2024 aims to build on the momentum and awareness generated by previous meetings, promote global collaboration in research to fight malaria in Africa and ultimately ensure the availability of a critical mass of competent malaria researchers and control managers needed for effective and sustained containment of the disease in Africa.

Links for registration and abstract submission will be published soon on the website here.

Join the AMMnet Slack workspace
If you haven’t joined the AMMnet slack workspace, join here! Many announcements, including job opportunities and upcoming events, are posted first on the Slack. This is also a great place to connect directly with other modelers!

  1. Jobs and grant opportunities

Clinton Health Access Initiative Technical Advisor
CHAI is seeking a highly motivated individual with strong public health experience and analytical skills to serve as an epidemiologist and technical advisor to its teams across the GMS. This role offers a unique opportunity for a talented individual to apply epidemiological and analytical skills to guide the operations of a cross-country disease elimination program. The successful candidate will lead a small team of epidemiologists and mentor health information advisors working directly with government counterparts to assess, design, and scale-up disease surveillance systems; conduct robust data analysis; and monitor and evaluate the success of ongoing efforts to achieve malaria elimination.

The individual will collaborate with a diverse team of CHAI staff based across multiple countries (primarily but not exclusively in Vietnam, Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos, India, and Papua New Guinea), government programs, academics, technology companies, and public health agencies. The successful candidate will possess strong communication, organizational, and management skills; work independently to drive implementation; have the potential to grow into a global health leader; and have deep personal commitment to producing results. You may find more information here.

Ifakara Health Institute Research Scientist (Data Analyst) – MAP EA Node, Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania
Ifakara Health Institute is seeking a Data Analyst to join the East Africa (EA) Node of the Malaria Atlas Project (MAP) team. The role involves supporting the development of software and systems for studying malaria and related topics, from design to maintenance. The Data Analyst will work with a team to create world-class software and user-friendly systems, including robust APIs for data access by both internal and external users to access the project’s data.

More Info & How to apply
You may find the job post here.
Apply by 17:00hrs on Wednesday, November 15, 2023.
For more details and how to apply, read the job announcement: Research Scientist (Data Analyst) – MAP EA Node, Dar

Ifakara Health Institute Senior Research Scientist (2 posts) – MAP EA Node, Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania
Ifakara Health Institute seeks a Senior Research Scientist with advanced modelling skills who will join the Malaria Atlas Project (MAP) East Africa (EA) Node team. The SRS will contribute to the project’s mission and objectives of developing and employing cutting-edge advanced geospatial analytical architectures to understand the risks and estimate the burden of Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax malaria, assessing the impact of interventions across various levels and settings at global, regional and national to provide the National Malaria Control Programmes (NMCPs) with the quality evidence to guide optimal allocation of resources in malaria-endemic countries. 

More Info & How to apply
You may find the job post here.
Apply by 17:00hrs on Wednesday, November 15, 2023. For more details and how to apply, read the job announcement: Senior Research Scientist – MAP EA Node, Dar

Ifakara Health Institute Research Scientist (2 posts) – MAP EA Node, Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania
Ifakara Health Institute is seeking a Research Scientist who will work with the Malaria Atlas Project (MAP) East Africa (EA) Node team and play a significant and strategic role in continuously assisting core researchers while improving the data science capability and contributing to the development of analytical models, preparing input data, deploying workflows, and disseminating results, including writing reports, papers for peer-reviewed publication, posters, etc.,  and engaging with relevant collaborators. Each RS will be allowed to design and implement his/her project with specific deliverables contributing to MAP’s overall objective and scope. 

More Info & How to apply
You may find the job post here.
Apply by 17:00hrs on Wednesday, November 15, 2023. For more details and how to apply, read the job announcement: Research Scientist – MAP EA Node, Dar

Regional AMMnet Event Grant
AMMnet would like to encourage the growth of regional AMMnet chapters and is looking to support small regional in-person AMMnet events such as meetings, conferences, or workshops. AMMnet will fund up to 10 regional events annually, each with a budget range of $500 to $3,000. 

Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis and in English, French, or Portuguese. More information and application instructions are available here: English, French, Portuguese.

  1. Workshops, webinars and conferences

Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health & the MIDAS Coordination Center at the University of Pittsburgh
12th Annual Workshop to Increase Diversity in Mathematical Modeling and Public Health
CCDD at Harvard and MIDAS are pleased to announce that they are now accepting applications for the 12th Annual Workshop to Increase Diversity in Mathematical Modeling & Public Health! 

The workshop will be held in person, March 4-5, 2024 in Boston, Massachusetts. The workshop is an annual event for undergraduates or students in a post-baccalaureate program from underrepresented groups who have an interest in public health and/or mathematical modeling, and are studying quantitative disciplines and/or public health at their home institutions. See the workshop website for eligibility criteria.

During the workshop, student participants will listen to scientific talks from public health researchers and trainees who use infectious disease epidemiology and mathematical modeling to solve problems in public health. They will also engage in professional development and networking opportunities, and participate in hands-on activities to practice the concepts and skills they are learning.

Students can submit an application anytime between now and the deadline of Sunday, November 19, 2023 at 11:59 PM EST. 

More information and how to apply can be found here.

Explore the crucial role of genomic data in tackling antimicrobial resistance | 2024 Scientific Conference
Registration for the 2024 conference focusing on Antimicrobial Resistance – Genomes, Big Data and Emerging Technologies (13-15 March 2024) opens soon!

Bringing together researchers, clinicians, computer scientists, and policymakers working in pathogen genomics, epidemiology, surveillance, and machine learning, to discuss the recent advances and current challenges shaping the field.

Discussion will cover a variety of topics, including:

  • Genomic surveillance of priority pathogens
  • Global public health pathogen genomics infrastructure
  • Translation and implication of genomics for antimicrobial resistance (AMR) control
  • Wastewater surveillance
  • AI, machine learning, and big data tools
  • Measuring the burden of AMR

Emphasis will be placed on demonstrating how findings from genomics studies can be implemented into clinical practice and policy, to control AMR.

This conference is an excellent platform to connect with experts, access exclusive talks, and present your own research on a global platform.

Navigate to the website here for more information and key dates. 

  1. Courses and Learning Opportunities

No courses and learning sources to share this month. Please send any opportunities to that you’d like to share.

  1. Subgroups, working groups, and regional activities

AMMnet Francophone
AMMnet has a group dedicated to building a French speaking modeling community. Led by Dr. Dr. Abdourahamane Diallo and Carmène Ngadjeu, they meet monthly, facilitate discussions around malaria modeling learning, collaboration, and resources for francophone countries. If you’d like to participate in the francophone group and receive an invitation to meetings and webinars, please contact

Upcoming Regional Events
November 6-10, 2023: Hands-on Malaria Modelling Development, Manuscript Writing Workshop, Uganda
Organized by Abel Wilson Walekhwa

November 25, 2023: Malaria Modeling Workshop, Nigeria
Organized by Progress Agboola

December 3, 2023: Three workshops, Communication and Reach for Public Health Researchers, Bangladesh
Organized by Tilak Chandra Nath

  1. Seminar recap and recordings

Monthly Seminar Series: Is there integrity in routine data?
Samuel Oppong, a PhD student at the Telethon Kids Institute, Curtin University, Australia, was our October AMMnet seminar presenter. He shared some nitty-gritty on the processes involved in the documentation and report of malaria routine data. Several issues associated with reported data, e.g. under-reporting and over-reporting, differences between registers and aggregated reports, some of which are attributed to illegible handwriting on the register to capture right data, incomplete filling of reports and untrained staff that are responsible for the filling and documentation of malaria routine data leading to inconsistency between variables of data were discussed. 

Quality issues with reported data, majorly completeness and discrepancies in the reported data, were highlighted to uncover the root-cause of over-reporting of malaria routine data. The presenter showed that some of these are due, majorly, to arithmetic or counting errors.

Some of the major deductions to address the issues as stated by the presenter include the need for modelers to explore opportunities in contributing to the improvements in the health system, digitalization of health service delivery, supporting facilities to ensure that data validation teams are functional and active amongst others. It was surprising to discover that the antenatal care records seem to be more accurate compared to malaria cases data.

You may find the recording and others on the AMMnet YouTube channel located on the website here. Watch past seminars, workshops, and special events. (Subject to speaker permission.)

  1. AMMnet Board meeting minutes

AMMnet’s Board met on October 31, 2023.

Present: Susan Rumisha, Hannah Slater, Justin Millar, Antonio Christophe Nkondjio, Jaline Gerardin, Cherlynn Dumbura, Caitlin Bever, Emmanuel Bakare

Absent: Luc Djogbenou, Emilie Pothin, Manuela Runge

Secretariat present: Shannon Stanfill, Ida Sagbo

  • Lovely to see so many Board members in Chicago a couple weeks ago! Too bad travel was not possible for everyone
  • The Board voted on proposed Advisory Board members:
    • consumers of applied modeling / analytics
      • Bea Galatas
      • Lawrence Kazembe
    • non-modelers working in malaria
      • Jean Louis Ndiaye
    • experts in technical training / capacity development
      • Sheetal Silal
      • Backup if Sheetal is too busy: Chijioke Kaduru
    • modelers of other diseases
      • Deirdre Hollingsworth
      • Backup: Juliet Pulliam
  • Jaline will reach out to Advisory Board candidates
  • Update from Emmanuel on attendance criteria: move to next meeting agenda
    • ToR: “Attendance criteria. The expectation is that Committee members attend all Committee meetings. The minimum attendance requirement is 2/3 of meetings over a 1-year period. Committee members are expected to have a reasonable reason for missing a meeting and to provide adequate notice. If a meeting is missed, the Committee member is expected to catch up by reading meeting minutes. If a Committee member consistently is unable to attend Committee meetings, they may be subject to removal from the Committee, pending 2/3 vote of the Board.”
  • Update from Susan and Antonio on funding resource opportunities
    • Susan will share details after meeting. Share with Antonio by end of week, then share on slack. Potentially add to website
    • Capacity strengthening and skill building
      • 5 sources
      • Grand Challenges
      • Opportunities for Africans – students, PDs, researchers to go to meetings, trainings on analytics (and other things)
      • World Bank Global Data Facility – trainings for capacity building on data aspects
      • Global Fund
      • UNITAID
    • Travel awards
      • 4 of these
      • Early Career Researchers Central database of travel grants
      • Advanced Africa
    • Publishing
      • Waivers for publishing papers
  • Update from Emilie on AMMnet Kigali meeting
    • Consider adding a presentation from each Objectives Committee
    • Session in morning, training in afternoon
    • call for abstracts
    • panel for SNT
    • session for GC grantees
    • poster session
    • travel funds for some presenters
  • Finance Committee will meet 10 Nov
  • Jaline will meet with Jenn Gardy on 17 Nov
  • RFP Task Force will meet 9 Nov to review past awards and discuss updates to RFP and scoring rubric
    • Reviewing awards, look at types of events awarded and identify gaps
    • Will decide if changes needed
    • Will evaluate scoring rubric
    • Considering growing awards program
    • will generate a report for GovCom, which meets 21 Nov
      • Consider a write up of notes from meeting and will send to all after GovCom meeting; will add to Board agenda 
  • Upcoming big-picture items for Board to discuss
    • regional/local chapters
      • to what extent do we want to push more support and activities to the regional chapters?
      • possibility of doubling the number of our small RFPs and also starting a large RFP for longer workshops; possibly tying these to local chapters
      • we could ask local chapters to write a ToR and supply an annual report of activities; in return they could get some discretionary funds for operations / administration
      • task force to think more about ideas for local chapters?
        • Budget? Where to find $? What do we want them to be doing? Take leadership to a point of local chapter funding itself.
        • How do groups like francophone/lusophone operate differently than local chapters
        • How connected to global AMMnet should local chapters be?
      • opportunity for leadership development for global AMMnet
      • chapters can register in their own countries
      • understand our membership -> what activities local chapters could do
      • TF: Antonio, Cherlynn
    • visioning workshop for board to flesh out our vision for AMMnet: is Dec meeting too soon?
      • Yes, but Feb or April 2024
      • Shannon and Jaline to research how these are done and will design an outline
      • See how we can involve general membership; consider in Kigali
    • Hiring additional staff for social media and other admin
      • bilingual and possibly remote from Cameroon
      • probably part-time
      • Once we have concrete idea of needs, will work with finance committee
  • AMMnet Board Self-Evaluation: due 7 Nov
  • AMMnet Board Chair Evaluation: due 7 Nov
  • Next Board meeting is scheduled for Dec 19 (Susan leaving Australia end of Nov)
    • Reschedule for Dec 12? Tentatively schedule, send to group and see if most available
    • Doodle week of 4th and 11th if Dec 12th doesn’t work
  • Any other order(s) of business
    • Paper on AMMnet: discuss next meeting

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