About the Department

The new Department of Biomedical Data Science (DBDS) was founded upon the conviction that the future of biomedical investigation will require increasingly close alignment between informatics and statistics. Thus, DBDS promotes better integration of faculty members in biomedical informatics and biostatistics and, thus, contributes to the removal of artificial barriers between the two domains. However, DBDS is not simply a mixing of two existing academic units. Rather, it begins to define a new amalgam: a coherent, unified academic discipline that can provide the basis for addressing the next generation of computational challenges in biomedicine.

The next decade of biomedical research will call for a new kind of data scientist. Analyzing mass cytometry data to reveal new cellular patterns, creating a Learning Health System to enable better treatment decisions, elucidating how the genomic data and EHR entries from a million veterans can reshape medical care, and anticipating the challenges in biomedical research that have not yet confronted us are tasks that cannot be addressed by traditional investigators in biomedical informatics and biostatistics working independently. The creation of DBDS, which brings together world-class expertise in quantitative and qualitative modeling, represents the first step in positioning Stanford to best address the exciting opportunities in biomedical computation that lie ahead.

Core department faculty will be drawn from Biostatistics, Biomedical Informatics Research (BMIR), and selected other divisions/departments. DBDS will also be tenure home for new faculty and departmental home for the BMI graduate degree program and the (future) Biomedical Data Science PhD program.