Department of Psychiatry Grand Rounds

Distinguished Visiting Lecturer Series Presentation:
Towards Technology That Can Forecast Your Mood, Stress, and Health

Rosalind W. Picard, ScD
Professor and Director, Affective Computing Research Group
Faculty Chair, Mind+Hand+Heart Intiative
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Chief Scientist
Empatica, Inc.


Learning objectives:

  • Learn how electrodermal activity (EDA), measured non-invasively on the wrist as a measure of sympathetic nervous system activity, and showing autonomic stress responses, also reflects more patterned activity that starts deep in the brain
  • Learn how EDA is not elicited merely by general "arousal" or “general sweating” as originally thought, but reflects lateralized patterns when regions such as the right or left amygdala, or right or left hippocampus are directly stimulated
  • Discover recent findings showing that some changes in the brain can activate changes on the wrist (but not on the scalp EEG!) – and how these may contribute to helping prevent SUDEP (sudden unexpected death in epilepsy)
  • Learn how wearable sensor and smartphone data, passively collected from patients with Major Depressive Disorder, can be used to accurately estimate their Hamilton Depression Rating Scale Scores – via artificial intelligence (AI) (machine learning)
  • Learn new applications of autonomic sensing and AI in autism, epilepsy, stress-related disorders, and depression research, and what will soon be possible in the future for personalized "weather-style forecasts" of mood, stress, and health


Remote live streaming locations:

  • Zuckerberg San Francisco General: Building 5, Room 7M30
  • San Francisco VA Medical Center: Building 8, Room 320B
  • Clearlake VA Clinic
  • Eureka VA Clinic
  • San Bruno VA Clinic
  • San Francisco VA Downtown Clinic
  • Santa Rosa VA Clinic
  • Ukiah VA Clinic

Live streaming is also available at


Grand Rounds presentations are for educational purposes and intended for a professional audience only.

To qualify for CME credit for this event, participants must (1) attend in-person or at one of the approved live streaming locations listed above; and (2) sign in at their location.

Tuesday, September 11, 2018 at 8:30am to 9:30am

HSW-301 Auditorium
513 Parnassus Avenue, San Francisco, California 94143