UF Health appoints chief data scientist

Jiang Bian, Ph.D., has been named UF Health chief data scientist, with a goal of aiding researchers as they move into a new frontier of using biomedical informatics to improve health care policy and practice.

Bian will develop and support data scientists across data types and diseases, help improve research infrastructure, and expand data science and translational science research endeavors. He will also work to develop a hub for computational health sciences with other stakeholders to advance data science and artificial intelligence research.

Bian, who will also remain professor and director of cancer informatics and Ehealth core with the UF College of Medicine health outcomes and biomedical informatics department, will report to Gigi Lipori, M.T., M.B.A., UF Health chief information officer and senior vice president.

“The chief data scientist is a new leadership role for the academic health center as we face exciting growth and investments in data applications, biomedical informatics and new technologies,” Lipori said. “Dr. Bian will provide strategic vision and leadership in partnership with our teams and leaders including the chief medical information officer, chief research information officer and others.”

For the academic components of the role, he will report to William Hogan, M.D., UF College of Medicine director of biomedical informatics for the health outcomes and biomedical informatics department.

With a bachelor’s degree in architectural environment and equipment engineering from Tongji University in Shanghai, China, Bian then earned a master’s degree in computer science and a doctoral degree in integrated computing from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. He began his career as a software engineer at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, first as lead application analyst for research programs and then IT research manager, with a joint appointment as an assistant professor in the department of biomedical informatics, before joining UF in 2015.

Bian describes himself as a “data junkie” dedicated to creating user-friendly tools to help clinicians make more informed decisions to benefit quality care.

Bian said his research has focused on data-driven applied medical informatics, including machine learning methods to solve big data problems in medicine; mining the internet to better understand health-related behavior and health outcomes to promote public and consumer health; and developing novel informatics resources to support patient care and clinical research.

“This new position allows me to augment the existing strong data and research infrastructure to advance data science and AI research, but also translate these efforts to have a real-world clinical and health outcomes impact,” he said.

Lipori said, “We look forward to a rewarding partnership with Dr. Bian for data integration, expanding the collaboration with Decision Support and Integrated Data Repository Research Services, and with colleagues across the entire organization to benefit our faculty and staff stakeholders.”

David R. Nelson, UF Health senior vice president for health affairs and president of UF Health, called this an innovative time for UF Health.

“Using large data sets to monitor patient outcomes and improve health care delivery is where we are focusing our AI efforts in medicine,” he said. “And Dr. Bian’s appointment as chief data scientist for UF Health is an example of our commitment to being on the leading edge in this environment.”

Media contact: Matt Walker, mwal0013@shands.ufl.edu, 352-265-8395

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Kimberly Rose

Director, Strategic Communications

Kim has spent 20-plus years writing, editing and developing strategic communications programs and campaigns. Her team supports UF Health with system communications: They’re like an in-house PR agency providing internal,...Read More