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Developing technology for the public good

Utah Informatics Initiative (UI2) Hosts Symposium.

How can technology be applied to improve the lives of underserved populations? And which entrepreneurs, researchers, teachers and clinicians are generating public benefits in their work?

The University of Utah Informatics Initiative (UI2) is hosting a virtual symposium to highlight Public Interest Technology (PIT) and make those connections.

“Public interest technology is one of the most exciting new opportunities for advancing the public good using data-driven science, engineering research and educational innovation,” said Mike Kirby, UI2 director. “We want to celebrate the creative work in public interest technology already being done on campus and identify opportunities for new collaborations.”

The symposium, which runs from 1 to 5 p.m. on Oct. 28, is targeted at faculty and industry partners who are helping to educate undergraduate and graduate students so they can assess the ethical, political and societal implications of new technology and design technologies that will serve the public good. The Zoom gathering will feature two keynote speakers: Eric Meyer, dean of the University of Texas at Austin’s School of Information; and Clint Betts, chief executive officer of Silicon Slopes.

In its second year, the Informatics Initiative was established by Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Dan Reed to build on the university’s existing education, research and workforce development strengths in data science. The initiative is funded using annual performance-based funding from the Utah Legislature.

Registration for the symposium is open until Oct. 26. For more information about UI2, visit, or contact Mike Kirby, executive director and professor Mike Kirby at