By Ian Allen
Camber’s first meeting with Dr. Caroline Buckee – the Associate Director of the Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics at the Harvard School of Public Health – was a watermark event for the company. It was March of 2020, the first lockdown orders had just been issued in California, and the Johns Hopkins COVID tracker reported 6,000 deaths worldwide. Very little was known about the disease, a vaccine was nowhere in sight, and treatment protocols were uncertain. If there was good news, it was the potential to use mobility data for epidemic modeling on a large scale. With this, we could have a tool to start fighting the disease immediately.
Since that call, we’ve worked almost daily with the COVID-19 Mobility Data Network (CMDN); work that has been enormously challenging and rewarding and exhausting. But, in reading the CMDN annual report, we are reminded of all the reasons to be hopeful; all the lessons learned that will serve humanity well in not only COVID-19 but whatever challenge may come next. We are reminded that our best work is still to come, and how honored we are to be a part of this remarkable group of scientists.