Shaun Forbes


Shaun Forbes successfully defended his dissertation "Propagating ambiguity into decision analyses of test-and-treat strategies." Shaun entered the HSR Doctoral Program in 2015 as a 2015-2016 Brown University Presidential Fellow with research interests in comparative effectiveness research (CER), meta-analysis, decision analysis and operations research / management science with Professor Thomas Trikalinos as his advisor. During his time in the program, Shaun was awarded the 2018 Lee B. Lusted Student Prize, Stephen Pauker Award for Quantitative Methods and Theoretical Developments and the 2016 Lee B. Lusted Student Prize. He counts among his presentations the International Conference for Health Policy Statistics and the AcademyHealth Annual Research Meeting 2016. Shaun received a BSBA Management Science from the University of Miami and the AM in Biostatistics from Brown University School of Public Health.


Tell us about your time at Brown. What did you enjoy most about being a doctoral student here?   

I couldn't have asked for a better graduate school experience. Throughout my time at Brown, I have been amazed by the kindness, creativity and mentorship offered by the faculty and staff -- especially my advisor Tom Trikalinos.

What public health issues do you hope to address through your dissertation?

My dissertation aims to provide a general framework for how to make reasonable test-and-treat decisions under severe uncertainty (ambiguity). To demonstrate its broad applicability, I applied the framework towards screening decision-making problems in both infectious (latent tuberculosis infection) and chronic (colorectal cancer) disease.

What are your future plans now that you have finished your PhD?

I will be starting as an Associate Consultant in the Healthcare Strategy practice at Analysis Group in Menlo Park, CA this Fall. In the meantime, I will be exploring how to quickly adapt my dissertation work towards improving test-and-treat decision-making for the COVID-19 pandemic.