Rayo tapped to serve as TDAI co-director

A man smiling outside wearing a bowtie

Associate Professor Mike Rayo says his appointment as a co-director for Ohio State’s Translational Data Analytics Institute (TDAI) will build “a formal bridge between our capabilities in ISE and the community of artificial intelligence/machine learning and other data science experts across the University.” 

“The ‘I’ in our Department stands for Integration,” Rayo says. “This is what our Department strives for and is known for internationally. Integration in this setting is the intentional design and implementation of new technologies and programs that utilize new data science technologies, e.g., artificial intelligence and machine learning, that explicitly support people and the work they do.” 

As a co-director, Rayo will lead the Responsible Data Science Community of Practice (CoP) and serve on the TDAI leadership team. 

“For the Community of Practice, we connect with the members to understand where they want the CoP to go, and we arrange programming that aligns with our mission,” he says. 

He will work with Co-directors Amy Schmitz (Law) and Srinivasan Parthasarathy (Computer Science), “to delve deeper into how to responsibly integrate AI into complex work and life environments, and how we design technology to enable human-machine mutualism,” Rayo says. 

He says the CoP plans to host two to three events each year, including a Sept. 28 presentation on intelligent cyber defense by Dr. Prasad Calyam. Rayo will moderate a panel discussion on “Responsibility at Run-time: Designing, Building and Evaluating Machines as Team Players” featuring Dr. Robert Hoffman, Dr. David Woods and Dr. Mike Johnson as part of TDAI’s 2023 Interdisciplinary Research Fall Forum, which takes place Nov. 8-9. 

Rayo has served as a core faculty member for TDAI for more than seven years where he has actively sought interdisciplinary collaborators across all of Ohio State’s colleges. 

“This has resulted in a number of successful collaborations,” he says, “including our transdisciplinary work to support detection and stop transmission of hospital-acquired infections, as well as a more nascent collaboration that combines community engagement, systems engineering, public health, geography and computer science to re-envision how the public can participate in community planning projects and other societal-scale activities.” 

In addition, he has served as the director for Symbiotic Design Laboratory, a TDAI Lab-in-Residence, for the last four years, which incubated both of those collaborations as well as a new collaboration with the College of Nursing to innovate nursing education methods. 

As a co-director, Rayo says his goal is to shift and expand the CoP’s focus “to include how our technologies interact with, support and hobble people’s capabilities in detecting adverse events, interpreting the world more broadly and responding appropriately. More specifically, how can we design data-rich technology applications so that if one technology component is having a bad day, and is functioning poorly, other technology components and the people involved can detect, coordinate and recover.  

“This is no small feat, and this type of integration is not currently the norm, which a number of high-profile, catastrophic incidents demonstrate. I want to share with our community the need to design for joint human-machine activity – where the technology functions as a good team player.” 


Story by Nancy Richison

Category: Faculty