Three-Project Series

Federated Learning Over Networks for Pandemics you own this product

intermediate Python • basics of data science
skills learned
basic flow control in Python • learn the weights of a linear classifier using gradient descent • implement a FL algorithm by combining gradient descent with a simple averaging scheme
Alexander Jung
3 weeks · 7-9 hours per week average · ADVANCED

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In this series of liveProjects, you’ll extend and upgrade basic machine learning techniques like linear regression to build a powerful tool that can make personalized predictions of an individual's COVID-19 infection status. You will apply federated learning techniques to train a machine learning system on a (fictional) dataset of smart phone data. Federated learning is a new ML paradigm used for the collaborative training of models from heterogeneous and distributed data such as audio recordings generated by smartphones. This liveProject series will teach you how to use federated learning techniques to exploit the intrinsic network structure (“contact networks”) between audio recordings in order to learn optimal model parameters for each individual. Federated learning techniques are privacy-friendly as they do not require the sharing of sensitive private data, such as audio recordings of smartphone users.

These projects are designed for learning purposes and are not complete, production-ready applications or solutions.

here's what's included

Project 1 Handling Sensitive Data
In this liveProject, you’ll develop a machine learning model that can make a personalized prediction of whether an individual has COVID-19. You’ll work with a fictional audio dataset of digital footprints from smart phones, applying logistic regression and decision trees to turn this dataset into a COVID-19 predictor. You’ll learn how to formulate a ML problem by identifying data points, and their features and labels, so that you can take advantage of ready-made ML methods.
Project 2 Build Network Models for Pandemics
In this liveProject, you’ll use machine learning to construct a contact tracing network for COVID-19 using location recordings from smart phone data. You’ll read the location of infected individuals, and generate a contact network of individuals who have been within two meters. Once you’ve established this tracing system, you’ll implement a distributed algorithm that can compute the average infection rate for each connected component of the contact network.
Project 3 Personalized Diagnosis of Symptoms
In this liveProject, you’ll apply the federated learning machine learning paradigm to compute a personalized infection risk diagnosis for COVID-19. Federated learning is an ML paradigm that learns from decentralized data via distributed computing environments. The risk diagnosis will come from a tailored classifier that is trained separately for each individual, by combining gradient descent with a network averaging method. You’ll then develop a federate learning algorithm that can be implemented by scalable passing messages over the contact network.

book resources

When you start each of the projects in this series, you'll get full access to the following book for 90 days.

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project author

Alexander Jung
Alexander Jung is an assistant professor for machine learning at Aalto University in Finland. Prior to joining Aalto, he obtained a PhD in statistical signal processing from TU Vienna in 2012 and was a postdoc at TU Vienna and ETH Zurich. Alex leads the Aalto research group “Machine Learning for Big Data'' that studies the fundamental limits and efficient algorithms for machine learning from large distributed collections of data. His current research focus is on privacy preserving and explainable federated machine learning methods for big data over networks. Alex has developed some of the most popular courses at Aalto University. He was selected as the Teacher of the Year by the Department of Computer Science in 2018.


This series of liveProjects is for Python data scientists interested in applying big data analytics to public healthcare. To begin this liveProject you will need to be familiar with the following:

  • Intermediate Python
  • Basic methods for storing and manipulating numeric arrays using Python package NumPy
  • Basic plotting using the Python package matplotlib
  • Basic methods for processing geographic coordinates using Python package GeoPy
  • Basics of NetworkX for storing and manipulating networked data
  • Basics of machine learning
  • Basics of data science


You choose the schedule and decide how much time to invest as you build your project.
Project roadmap
Each project is divided into several achievable steps.
Get Help
While within the liveProject platform, get help from other participants and our expert mentors.
Compare with others
For each step, compare your deliverable to the solutions by the author and other participants.
book resources
Get full access to select books for 90 days. Permanent access to excerpts from Manning products are also included, as well as references to other resources.