Big Data for the Public Good is a four-part seminar series hosted by Code for America in San Francisco and sponsored by Greenplum, a division of EMC, that explores how data scientists and change agents are harnessing the big data explosion to address the great opportunities and pressing challenges of our time.
Seminar 1: Data Visualization (watch and read):
Mike Migurski and Eric Rodenbeck of Stamen Design presented the first seminar on storytelling in the era of Big Data. How can we create compelling narratives from data? What is the potential of data visualization to serve the public good? Watch the video online and read the article that describes how data scientists, designers and developers sharing an inventive storytelling vision can make information relevant to broad audiences and inspire social change.
On March 19, 2012, Jake Porway from Data Without Borders and The New York Times will present the second seminar at the Code for America office in San Francisco. It's a given that large companies like Google, Amazon and Facebook maintain dedicated data science teams with full-time analysts who examine user data in real time. Non-profits do not share this luxury, often lacking the resources to analyze and act upon their rich datasets. Jake Porway speaks about Data Without Borders, a group that harnesses the data science community to provide non-profits with these resources, so that they may "use data in the service of humanity."
Seminar 3: The Corporation, Apr 3, 2012
With Ward Cunningham of Nike
How do companies proactively promote sustainable practices? By designing sustainability into their products from day one. Ward Cunningham, Nike's Open Data for Sustainability Fellow, reports on his work with the company's data managers to model the lifecycle of Nike's products and steward the production of environmentally sound merchandise, from the prototype stage to manufacturing.
Seminar 4: Data Science as Sport, May 16, 2012
With Jeremy Howard of Kaggle
Data is abundant and infinitely replicable. The challenge lies in discovering the relevant and actionable information that exists within this data deluge. Jeremy Howard is the President and Chief Scientist for Kaggle, an online platform for predictive modeling competitions that "makes data science a sport." Kaggle provides data sets to the world's best data analysts, demonstrating how the data science community can contribute the public good through competitive analysis of government and non-profit data.