Pittsburgh tech and education leaders at this year’s South by Southwest (SXSW) festival, held in Austin, Texas, March 6-20, 2022, were recognized by Sophie Burkholder, a Staff Writer for Technical.ly, a news organization that serves a community of technology professionals, including entrepreneurs, technologists, and their supporters. This is the first in-person SXSW since 2020.

McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine affiliated faculty member Dan Ding, PhD, an associate professor and researcher at the University of Pittsburgh’s Human Engineering Research Laboratories, participated in a SXSW panel discussion on “The Technology Making Fitness More Accessible.” Dr. Ding, who also has an appointment in Pitt’s Department of Bioengineering, discussed new tech making fitness more accessible to people of all abilities, including adaptive sports and wheelchairs designed for activities like hiking.

Dr. Ding has authored or co-authored over 140 peer-reviewed journal publications, conference papers and abstracts, and book chapters. She has been awarded grants from the VA, DOD, NIDRR, NSF, and NIH for her work. Dr. Ding has extensive experience in developing sensor-driven health applications for wheelchair users, and assistive robotic devices and systems. She was the Thrust Leader of the Home and Community Health and Wellness (HCHW) Testbed in the National Science Foundation’s Quality of Life Technology Engineering Research Center (a joint effort between Pitt and Carnegie Mellon), which focuses on creating and evaluating home and community-based solutions for assessing and informing health and functional status of people with disability and older adults.

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