Science for Social Good

Applying AI, cloud and deep science toward new societal challenges.

 

Explore projects

Applied science and technology can solve the world’s toughest problems

IBM's Science for Social Good initiative partners IBM Research scientists and engineers with academic fellows and subject matter experts from a diverse range of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to tackle emerging societal challenges using science and technology. Inspired by other successful philanthropic IBM initiatives that prioritize the giving of time and talent to governments and non-profits, Science for Social Good is built on the premise that applied science and technology can solve the world’s toughest problems; accelerating the rate and pace of solutions through the scientific method.

Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies

Cognitive disease hunter

logo

Cognitive disease hunter

Sustainable Development Goal: SDG3 – Good Health and Wellbeing

Infectious diseases are an increasing problem globally. Developing the ability to predict new or unexpected outbreaks remains one of the most difficult problems of modern times. Given that the majority of infectious diseases emerging in humans have mammal origins, it should be possible to learn the intrinsic features of pathogens that cross-infect humans and identify new infections before they emerge. The team plans to build a cognitive solution that reads biology publications and extracts relevant knowledge to power machine learning algorithms on a hunt for diseases.


Read blog: The Cary Institute teams with IBM Research to Address Zika

Learn more about the Cary Institute


St. John’s Bread & Life

Emergency food best practice: The digital experience

logo

Emergency food best practice: The digital experience

Sustainable Development Goal: SDG1 – No Poverty, SDG2 – Zero Hunger

In 2015, 42.2 million Americans lived in food insecure households. Every day, St. John's Bread & Life, an emergency food provider in New York City, serves more than 2,500 meals with extraordinary efficiency. The team plans to create a cognitive supply chain model of emergency food operations and share it via an API and interactive digital experience. This will allow Bread & Life to share best practices with food providers around the country and provide them with a first-of-a-kind digital outreach campaign to help inform the public about hunger in a way that registers, stays and changes behaviors.


Learn more about St. John’s Bread & Life


IBM Watson Health

Combating the opioid crisis

logo

Combating the opioid crisis

Sustainable Development Goal: SDG3 – Good Health and Well Being

Opioid abuse is among the deadliest population health crises in the United States. In most cases, this stems from a prescription. Understanding the patterns of addiction, learning evidence-based guidelines for responsible prescription and creating early warning systems are instrumental when battling new addictions. The team will couple advanced machine learning methods with the wealth of Watson Health Truven Health Analytics data to develop insights and make them available to providers, payers and public health officials to help curb the opioid epidemic.


Learn more about IBM Watson Health


International Center for Appropriate and Sustainable Technology

Changing behaviors to conserve energy

logo

Changing behaviors to conserve energy

Sustainable Development Goal: SDG7 – Affordable and Cleaner Energy, SDG11 – Sustainable Cities and Communities

World energy consumption is predicted to grow by 48 percent between 2012 and 2040. Technology solutions only address half the problem of trying to conserve energy. Behavior change is just as important. As multi-family affordable housing is retrofitted for energy conservation, it is also fitted with sensors that allow us to examine behaviors of the building residents to guide and evaluate any interventions that may be undertaken to encourage conservation. The team plans to build a solution for disseminating information about behaviors that reduce energy usage and measuring the impact of the intervention.


Learn more about International Center for Appropriate and Sustainable Technology


Accelerated Cure Project for Multiple Sclerosis

Open innovation platform for scientific discovery

logo

Open innovation platform for scientific discovery

Sustainable Development Goals: SDG3 – Good Health and Well Being, SDG9 – Industry Innovation and Infrastructure

Technology has put us in a position where we can harness the power of many minds to solve a problem collaboratively. Yet new innovation platforms centered on discovery, understanding, knowledge sharing and exchange, poised with cognitive capabilities, are needed to engage stakeholders and subject matter experts in discussion and collaboration, and can help accelerate how we solve problems. To empower data-driven research on multiple sclerosis, the team plans to design a collaborative data science platform that understands source code of a data analysis program. Without user intervention, the system will be designed to compare analyses based on an ontology, recommend similar and complementary analyses, measure progress and summarize the activity on the platform.


Learn more about Accelerated Cure Project for Multiple Sclerosis


Coming soon

More projects addressing some of the world’s biggest challenges coming soon

Explore corporate responsibility at IBM