Heather Mattie

Lecturer on Biostatistics

Executive Director, Master’s Program in Health Data Science

Department of Biostatistics

655 Huntington Avenue
Building I, 4th floor Room 421A
Boston, MA 02115
Email: hemattie@hsph.harvard.edu
Phone: (617) 432-5308



Dr. Mattie’s research focuses on the intersection between biostatistics, data science, and network science. Specifically, she has used network science and machine learning to study interactions in communities, as well as the development and application of artificial intelligence in healthcare research. Her research has also involved the notion of algorithmic fairness, in terms of an algorithm compounding inequities working against underrepresented or disadvantaged groups in society. Her work has found links between unhealthy weight control behaviors and the use of mobile dating applications, particularly in racial and ethnic minorities. She has developed methods that predict tie strength in a network, which assists in modeling the spread of disease and information. Additionally, her work has examined the potential for artificial intelligence to improve inference from data for care and population health, as well as the challenges related to bias and scalability in such models.

Dr. Mattie is involved in the diversity and inclusion efforts of the Biostatistics department and enjoys mentoring students.


“Yes, but will it work for my patients?” Driving clinically relevant research with benchmark datasets by T Panch, T Pollard, H Mattie, E Lindemer, P A Keane and L A Celi. npj Digital Medicine 3:87 (2020) Journal

Artificial intelligence and algorithmic bias: implications for health systems by T Panch, H Mattie, R Atun. J Glob Health2019 Dec; 9(2): 010318. Journal

A framework for predicting impactability of digital care management using machine learning methods by H Mattie,  P Reidy, P Bachtiger, E Lindemer, N Nikolaev, M Jouni, J Schaefer, M Sherman, T Panch. Population Health Management (2019) Journal

Turning the crank for machine learning: ease, at what expense? by T Pollard, I Chen, J Wiens, S Horng, D Wong, M Ghassemi, H Mattie, E Lindemer, T Panch. The Lancet Digital Health 1:5 (2019) Journal 

The “inconvenient truth” about AI in healthcare by T Panch, H Mattie, L A Celi. npj Digital Medicine 2:77 (2019) Journal

Dating app use and unhealthy weight control behaviors among a sample of U.S. adults: a cross-sectional study by A Tran, C Suharlim, H Mattie, K Davison, M Agenor, S B Austin. Journal of eating disorders 7:1 (2019) Journal

Understanding tie strength in social networks using a local “bow tie” framework by H Mattie, K Engo-Monsen, R Ling, JP Onnela. Scientific Reports 8 (2018) Journal

Generalizations of edge overlap to weighted and directed networks by H Mattie, JP Onnela. Under review (2017) arXiv


BST 260: Introduction to Data Science, Course website

BST 261: Data Science II (Deep Learning), Course GitHub repository

BST 270: Reproducible Data Science

HDSC 325: Health Data Science Capstone Course


Unsung Women’s Project, Connecting the Data Dots: Heather Mattie Studies, Teaches and Lives Connection (2019)

MIT Technology Review, How Close Are You Really? (2017)

Social Media



Ph.D. Biostatistics, 2017, Harvard Graduate School of Arts and Sciences
S.M. Biostatistics, 2013, Harvard Graduate School of Arts and Sciences
M.S. Mathematics, 2010, Claremont Graduate University
B.S. Mathematics, 2008, University of La Verne