School of Informatics and Computing Menu

Munmun DeChoudhury, Ph.D.: Communities in Distress: Opportunities and Challenges of Social Media in Mental Well-being



Social media sites are continually creating rich repositories of information relating to our activities, emotion and linguistic expression. In this talk I will discuss how such trails of data may be harnessed to reason about our mental health concerns. First, I will discuss a series of studies that examined how cues derived from social media around major life events (e.g., childbirth) and societal disruptions (e.g.,  violence) may help infer risks to well-being. Second, I will discuss threads of research in which we investigated the role of social media systems in providing a platform of expression to distressed communities and communities exhibiting deviant health behaviors. Broadly, I will reflect on how this new line of research bears potential in informing the design of interventions for improved well-being, privacy and ethical considerations, and in this context, the challenges and opportunities of the increasing ubiquity of social media.

About Munmun De Choudhury

Munmun De Choudhury is currently an assistant professor at the School of Interactive Computing, Georgia Tech. Munmun’s research interests are in computational social science, with a focus on reasoning about health and well-being from social digital footprints. She has been recipient of ACM SIGCHI 2014 best paper award and ACM SIGCHI honorable mention awards in 2012 and 2013, the Edenfield Faculty Fellowship, the Yahoo! Faculty Engagement award and has authored nearly 50 peer-reviewed publications. Her work has also been extensively covered by venues like the New York Times, the TIME magazine, the Wall Street Journal, and the NPR. Earlier, Munmun was a faculty associate with the   Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard, a postdoctoral researcher at Microsoft Research, and obtained her PhD in Computer Science from Arizona State University in 2011.

Learn more about Munmun DeChoudhury at and