We are a small team of interdisciplinary scholars and students with a wide range of skills and experience. Our backgrounds range from computer science to psychiatry to communication studies. We are united by the common goal of improving digital health management.

We closely collaborate with the Center for Behavioral Intervention Technologies (CBITS) and Rush University Medical Center.

Madhu Reddy


Madhu Reddy’s primary interests are in understanding how we can better design and implement health information technologies to improve communication and collaboration in clinical settings. His interdisciplinary research connects medical informatics, computer-supported cooperative work, and information sciences.


Rachel Kornfield

Postdoctoral Scholar

Rachel is a health communication researcher specializing in applying emerging communication technologies to improve mental health. Rachel completed her PhD in Mass Communications at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her dissertation work examined online peer-to-peer support forums for depression, substance use disorders, and other mental health conditions. Now a Postdoctoral Fellow at Northwestern University, Rachel’s current research focuses on supporting individuals with depression and anxiety through online communication with peers, coaches, and automated conversational agents.


Kathryn Ringland

Postdoctoral Scholar

Kathryn (Kate) Ringland, PhD in Informatics from the University of California, Irvine, is a NIH Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award Postdoctoral Fellow at Northwestern University. Her research interests include studying and designing assistive technology for people with disabilities.


Jonah Meyerhoff

Postdoctoral Scholar

Jonah Meyerhoff is a NIMH-funded T32 postdoctoral research fellow in the Center for Behavioral Intervention Technologies (CBITs) at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine. Dr. Meyerhoff’s research focuses on integrating prevention science, novel data collection methods, as well as developing and testing technology-based interventions for affective disorders. He has a specific interest in primary prevention of psychological disorders and adverse clinical events through thoughtfully-designed technology-based tools. Dr. Meyerhoff has a background in suicide prevention, culturally-responsive risk assessment, and cognitive behavioral interventions for recurrent depressive disorders. He earned his doctorate in clinical psychology from the University of Vermont and completed his clinical internship at the University of Rochester School of Medicine.


Shefali Haldar

Postdoctoral Scholar

Shefali Haldar is an HCI and Health Informatics researcher who studies how technologies can empower people in managing their health. Her current interests include supporting the needs of people managing mental health conditions, specifically in the context of perinatal depression. Shefali received her PhD in Health Informatics from the University of Washington, where she researched how technologies—such as patient portals and online peer communities—could improve patients’ hospital experiences.


Chi Young Oh

Visiting Scholar

Chi Young is an interdisciplinary information science researcher and advocate of human-centered design. He currently works as a visiting postdoctoral researcher at the PITCH Lab, focusing at the intersection of human information behavior, human-computer interaction, and consumer health informatics. His research uses qualitative and mixed-method approaches to gain a deeper understanding of people’s interaction with information and technology in everyday life, particularly for their adjustment to a new community and health management. Through collaboration with research teams in the PITCH Lab and the Center for Behavioral Intervention Technologies (CBITs) at Northwestern University and the Human-Computer Interaction Lab (HCIL) at University of Maryland, College Park, he examines how young people use information and technology to manage their health and mental health, exploring ways to design systems to help empower people from diverse backgrounds to make better-informed decisions about their health and well-being.


Ashley Marie Walker

PhD Candidate

Ashley Marie Walker is a PhD candidate in the Media, Technology. & Society program at Northwestern University. Her work looks at the ways online social spaces impact group dynamics and intracommunity conflict, ecological perspectives on sociotechnical systems, and how epistemic injustices influence coordination and collaboration practices for response to long-term, systemic crises. She works with Madhu Reddy in the PITCH Lab, and her dissertation work looks at how the invisible labor that brings people, information, and technology into working configurations can exclude crucial stakeholders in responding to the rise in maternal mortality in the US.


Eleanor Burgess

PhD Candidate

My research investigates how technologies influence human health. I explore the needs of individuals, families, and healthcare providers to first deeply understand these contexts and then create human-centered solutions to help people reach their health-related goals. I have designed together with firefighters, healthcare providers, and patients. I currently conduct research to support mental health, and work with care managers and people managing depression to support mental healthcare delivery and digital mental health interventions.


Renwen (Alice) Zhang

PhD Candidate

My research focuses on the effects of digital technology on individuals’ well-being and social relations. I use mixed methods to examine how individuals use social media and mobile health apps to manage their mental health and communicate with others, with a particular focus on self-disclosure and online privacy. I am interested in building bridges between the Communication and Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) research communities. I believe that only by taking an interdisciplinary research approach can we address the numerous challenges we face in the digital era.


Ada Ng

PhD Student

Ada investigates how personal self-tracking data can be utilized for purposes beyond self-reflection and leveraged as a tool for self-expression. Currently, she is studying how data from sensors can be used to support mental health care in the clinic. Specifically, her research is on how commercial wrist-worn wearables can be used in the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder. Broadly, her interests lie in human-computer interaction, personal informatics, and design. Prior to graduate school, she worked as a user experience researcher in Chicago.


Angela Smith

PhD Student

Angela is seeking to understand and help navigate homeless emerging adults’ transition to mainstream society leveraging technology to carry out organizational work in a sociotechnical context. More specifically, Angela explores how we design technology to develop social capital and social trust to improve the collaboration between homeless emerging adults and supportive services staff within a homeless shelter network. Broadly, her research interests include human computer interaction, equitable design, and providing a voice to vulnerable populations.


Hannah Levin

PhD Student

Hannah Levin is interested in improving the design of health information. Her research areas include visualization of patient-generated data, mental health management, and qualitative methods.