Jim Todd
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Jim Todd​​ (LSHTM) is Professor of Applied Biostatistics in London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) and a co-founder of the INSPIRE network. INSPIRE aims to bring together African data professionals to build a practical network for harmonizing and sharing data on population health in East Africa. He has worked with several health and demographic surveillance systems (HDSS) over the last 32 years, initially working with INDEPTH. He and Prof Basia Zaba (LSHTM) and used that experience to form the ALPHA network to analyse harmonized population data on HIV. Jim and Damazo Kadengye (APHRC) formed the INSPIRE network led by an African institution focused on Eastern African population data, using new techniques and methods to expand the harmonization of data to other diseases and conditions. Jim is focused on training African biostatisticians and developing opportunities for them to expand their work. With Tobias Chirwa (Wits) he is co-PI of the SSACAB consortium, and has worked with several of the SSACAB institutions to help establish Master’s programs in epidemiology and applied biostatistics. The aim is to build the cadre of data professionals to utilise the opportunities for analysis in the future, building on the wealth of health data in African countries. Jim believes the next steps in creating Big Data for health will be through participation by national governments and regional bodies. The biggest issues are not technical, but around the implementation using ethical ways to reward both data producers and data users. He believes that listening to stakeholders and building effective networks are the best way forward and this will help drive better policies to improve the health of people in Africa. Jim lives and works in Tanzania, where he is applying for citizenship. His research and teaching profile can be found at https://www.lshtm.ac.uk/aboutus/people/todd.jim