Connect

Faculty & Staff Honors

Faculty & Staff Honors

UNC Faculty Awarded USAID’s Science and Technology Pioneers Prize

Dr. Sharon Weir, research assistant professor of epidemiology at the University of North Carolina Gillings School of Global Public Health and fellow at UNC’s Carolina Population Center, has received the U.S. Agency for International Development’s Science and Technology Pioneers Prize for her efforts to develop and use the Priorities for Local AIDS Control Efforts (PLACE) Method. PLACE uses data to identify areas with high incidence of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections, including venues and events at which people meet new sexual or needle-sharing partners. Using low-cost global positioning system receivers and free Google Earth software, the method produces coverage maps showing gaps in prevention programs and allows strategic planners to assess the most at-risk rural areas to deliver timely HIV preventive and treatment responses. Currently being deployed in Uganda after successful application in South Africa, PLACE has been replicated in 28 countries and has mapped more than 100 target areas.