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  1. Abstract

    Climate extremes cause significant winter wheat yield loss and can cause much greater impacts than single extremes in isolation when multiple extremes occur simultaneously. Here we show that compound hot-dry-windy events (HDW) significantly increased in the U.S. Great Plains from 1982 to 2020. These HDW events were the most impactful drivers for wheat yield loss, accounting for a 4% yield reduction per 10 h of HDW during heading to maturity. Current HDW trends are associated with yield reduction rates of up to 0.09 t ha−1per decade and HDW variations are atmospheric-bridged with the Pacific Decadal Oscillation. We quantify the “yield shock”, which is spatially distributed, with the losses in severely HDW-affected areas, presumably the same areas affected by the Dust Bowl of the 1930s. Our findings indicate that compound HDW, which traditional risk assessments overlooked, have significant implications for the U.S. winter wheat production and beyond.

  2. Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 6, 2023
  3. Graph Convolutional Network (GCN) plays pivotal roles in many real-world applications. Despite the successes of GCN deployment, GCN often exhibits performance disparity with respect to node de- grees, resulting in worse predictive accuracy for low-degree nodes. We formulate the problem of mitigating the degree-related per- formance disparity in GCN from the perspective of the Rawlsian difference principle, which is originated from the theory of distribu- tive justice. Mathematically, we aim to balance the utility between low-degree nodes and high-degree nodes while minimizing the task- specific loss. Specifically, we reveal the root cause of this degree- related unfairness by analyzing the gradients of weight matrices in GCN. Guided by the gradients of weight matrices, we further propose a pre-processing method RawlsGCN-Graph and an in- processing method RawlsGCN-Grad that achieves fair predictive accuracy in low-degree nodes without modification on the GCN architecture or introduction of additional parameters. Extensive experiments on real-world graphs demonstrate the effectiveness of our proposed RawlsGCN methods in significantly reducing degree- related bias while retaining comparable overall performance.
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available April 25, 2023
  4. Chua Chin Heng, Matthew (Ed.)
    Early Childhood Caries (ECC) is the most common childhood disease worldwide and a health disparity among underserved children. ECC is preventable and reversible if detected early. However, many children from low-income families encounter barriers to dental care. An at-home caries detection technology could potentially improve access to dental care regardless of patients’ economic status and address the overwhelming prevalence of ECC. Our team has developed a smartphone application (app), AICaries, that uses artificial intelligence (AI)-powered technology to detect caries using children’s teeth photos. We used mixed methods to assess the acceptance, usability, and feasibility of the AICaries app among underserved parent-child dyads. We conducted moderated usability testing (Step 1) with ten parent-child dyads using "Think-aloud" methods to assess the flow and functionality of the app and analyze the data to refine the app and procedures. Next, we conducted unmoderated field testing (Step 2) with 32 parent-child dyads to test the app within their natural environment (home) over two weeks. We administered the System Usability Scale (SUS) and conducted semi-structured individual interviews with parents and conducted thematic analyses. AICaries app received a 78.4 SUS score from the participants, indicating an excellent acceptance. Notably, the majority (78.5%) of parent-taken photos of children’smore »teeth were satisfactory in quality for detection of caries using the AI app. Parents suggested using community health workers to provide training to parents needing assistance in taking high quality photos of their young child’s teeth. Perceived benefits from using the AICaries app include convenient at-home caries screening, informative on caries risk and education, and engaging family members. Data from this study support future clinical trial that evaluates the real-world impact of using this innovative smartphone app on early detection and prevention of ECC among low-income children.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 2, 2023
  5. Free, publicly-accessible full text available January 1, 2023