Jude Mikal

Picture of Jude Mikal
Senior Research Fellow
College of Pharmacy

The advent and widespread adoption of social media and other forms of computer-mediate communication (CMC) has had a dramatic impact on population health: both good and bad. By changing how we view ourselves, how we engage with each other, and how we interact with our surroundings, there is hardly an aspect of the human experience that is not touched by the technology it is mediated or facilitated by.

Over the past 15 years, my research has focused on the role of computers in determining health through social engagement. We have known for a long time that socially supportive peer networks have a positive bearing on health, but the migration of those interactions into virtual spaces left critical questions as to whether and how those relationships would continue to buffer against distress. Moreover, as the affordances of these technologies have changed - so have the interactions and their implications on health.