Data Seminar Series

Knowledge Networks - Opportunities and Challenges

Speaker:Charles Schmitt
Date: Monday, November 14, 2016
Time: 10:30am - 11:30am
Location: D344 LSRC, Duke


Data systems that hold assertions of scientific knowledge are becoming increasingly important as a pillar of scientific discovery and in the translation of basic science to application. This importance was emphasized in the 2011 NIH Report "Toward Precision Medicine: Building a Knowledge Network for Biomedical Research and a New Taxonomy of Disease" which also highlighted the need for linking knowledge sources into a network of knowledge. Despite a wealth of research and technologies in this area, multiple challenges exist in realizing the potential that large scale knowledge bases offer science. This talk reviews ongoing as well as new work in constructing and applying knowledge bases at RENCI, predominately in the area of translational biomedical research, as case studies of the opportunities and challenges that exist.


Charles Schmitt serves as chief technology officer and as director of informatics at the Renaissance Computing Institute (RENCI). Since joining RENCI, he has led or participated in projects in the areas of data security, data mining and analysis, data management, genomic sequencing, bioinformatics, patient monitoring, cheminformatics, and medical decision support. He has served as an investigator or co-principal investigator on multiple grants from the NIH, NSF, and DHS, was the acting science information officer at the National Institute for Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) in 2014, and led the formation of the international iRODS Consortium in 2013. Prior to joining RENCI, he worked in industry in the areas of bioinformatics, data mining, and software engineering at IBM, BD Technologies, and several small companies. He holds a BS in physics and a PhD in computer science from UNC-Chapel Hill.