Wu, Tsz Kei Joseph


Division of Epidemiology and Biostatistics

  • BS, PhD, FFPH

Professor Joseph Wu specializes in mathematical and statistical modelling of diseases. His research aims are: (i) to develop practical analytics and strategies for disease control and prevention; and (ii) to translate his research into policies and practice. He has worked on COVID-19, seasonal and pandemic influenza, hand-foot-and-mouth diseases, HPV, MERS, yellow fever, cervical cancer, colorectal cancer and breast cancer. He earned his PhD (Operations Research) and BS (Chemical Engineering) from MIT.

Professor Wu is the managing director of the Laboratory of Data Discovery for Health (D24H)His research program in D24H aims to develop AI technology and tools for global and personal health protection, with a particular focus on vaccine hesitancy and epidemic nowcasting/forecasting.

He is the director of: (i) HKU's first Massive Open Online Courseware (MOOC) Epidemics which has had more than 50,000 people enrolled since its first launch in 2014; and (ii) the Croucher Summer Course Vaccinology for Public Health and Clinical Practice in the 21st Century.

He is co-editor-in-chief of Epidemics and an associate editor of PLOS Computational Biology and PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases. He is a member of the WHO Advisory Committee on Immunization and Vaccines-related Implementation Research (IVIR-AC). He is a member of the MIT SOLVE Challenge Leadership Group and an SME advisor of MIT HK Innovation Node. He is a Fellow of the UK Faculty of Public Health.


  1. Clarivate Highly Cited Researcher (2021, 2022)
  2. HKU Outstanding Young Researcher Award (2015)
  3. HKU Research Output Prize (2015, 2017)
  4. HKUMed Outstanding Research Output Award (2014, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2021, 2022)
  5. Georgia Cancer Coalition Distinguished Cancer Scholar (2003)
Selected Publications
  1. Wu JT, Leung K, Bushman M, Kishore N, Niehus R, M de Salazar P, Cowling BJ, Lipsitch M, Leung GM. Estimating clinical severity of COVID-19 from the transmission dynamics in Wuhan, China. Nature Medicine. 2020.
  2. Wu JT, Leung K, Leung GM. Nowcasting and forecasting the potential domestic and international spread of the 2019-nCoV outbreak originating in Wuhan, China: a modelling study. Lancet; 395(10225): 689–697. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(20)30260-9 (2020).
  3. Wang L, Wu JT. Characterizing the dynamics underlying global spread of epidemics. Nature Communications, 9(1):218 (2018).
  4. Leung K, Lipsitch M, Yuen KY, Wu JT. Monitoring the fitness of antiviral-resistant influenza strains during an epidemic: a mathematical modelling study. The Lancet Infectious Diseases, 17(3): 339-347 (2017).
  5. Wu JT, Peak C, Leung GM & Lipsitch M. Fractional Dosing of Yellow Fever Vaccine to Extend Supply: A Modeling Study. The Lancet. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(16)31838-4 (2016).
  6. Wu JT, Jit, M, Zheng, Y, Leung, K, Xing, W, Yang, J, Liao, Q, Cowling, BJ, Yang, B, Lau, EH, Takahashi, S, Farrar, JJ, Grenfell, BT, Leung, GM & Yu, H. Routine Pediatric Enterovirus 71 Vaccination in China: a Cost-Effectiveness Analysis. PLoS Medicine 13, e1001975, doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001975 (2016).
  7. Wu JT, Ho, A, Ma, ES, Lee, CK, Chu, DK, Ho, PL, Hung, IF, Ho, LM, Lin, CK, Tsang, T, Lo, SV, Lau, YL, Leung, GM, Cowling, BJ & Peiris, JS. Estimating Infection Attack Rates and Severity in Real Time during an Influenza Pandemic: Analysis of Serial Cross-Sectional Serologic Surveillance Data. PLoS Medicine 8, e1001103, doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001103 (2011).
  8. Wu JT, Lee, CK, Cowling, BJ & Yuen, KY. Logistical feasibility and potential benefits of a population-wide passive-immunotherapy program during an influenza pandemic. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 107, 3269-3274, doi:10.1073/pnas.0911596107 (2010).
  9. Wu JT, Leung, GM, Lipsitch, M, Cooper, BS & Riley, S. Hedging against antiviral resistance during the next influenza pandemic using small stockpiles of an alternative chemotherapy. PLoS Medicine 6, e1000085, doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1000085 (2009).
  10. Wu JT, Riley, S, Fraser, C & Leung, GM. Reducing the impact of the next influenza pandemic using household-based public health interventions. PLoS Medicine 3, e361, doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.0030361 (2006).