Biology is beautiful and complex. However, the massive amount of biological knowledge cannot fit anyone’s mind. That is why I study formal knowledge representations of biology and the socio-technological process of knowledge integration. Currently, I focus on the concept of cell type and representation of knowledge about human cells in the context of the Human Cell Atlas. I work on semantic modelling of cell types, devising ways to employ semantic web capabilities to integrate datasets and describe experimental discoveries.
My daily research activities are intertwined with my participation in Wikimedia projects. The collaborative environment of Wikipedia was the basis for Wikidata, a huge collaborative modelling database. I work with open representation of concepts on Wikidata to release biological data, There the formalizations become immediately available for everyone, both within and outside the walls of academia.
My research has (as I see it) a macro aspect to improve how we to science. I hope it benefits at first the scientific/academic community, where formalization can help us to share ideas and better understand each other. Secondly, I see a medical benefit which is not place/community constrained. By having a rigorous representation, we can search for treatments more efficiently, and this applies for the whole spectrum of diseases. I also have a hope to benefit regions from the global south (like Brazil) by showing the value of theoretical, low-budget science, providing low/mid-income place scientists with the means for their science to flourish.
Contact Tiago at email@example.com