We are living inside a data revolution that is transforming the way we understand and interact with each other and the world - and it has only just begun. Every field is now having its “data moment,” giving mission-driven organizations brand new opportunities to harness data to advance their work. In fact, the same algorithms that companies use to boost profits can help these organizations boost their impact. From poverty alleviation to healthcare access to improved education, data science has the potential to move the needle on seemingly insurmountable issues, but only if there is close collaboration between data scientists and subject matter experts. Since Porway founded DataKind in 2011, its volunteers have delivered over $5 million in pro bono services to social change organizations worldwide - helping the World Bank estimate poverty from satellite imagery, Crisis Text Line use text data to reach thousands more individuals in need and the Red Cross use open data to fight fires before they happen. In this talk, Porway discusses the exciting potential of big data to tackle big social issues and how data scientists can apply their skills for the greater good.
Data Science for the Greater Good
Jake Porway is the founder and executive director of DataKind, a nonprofit that harnesses the power of data science in the service of humanity. He is an alumni of the New York Times R&D Lab, and has worked at Google and Bell Labs. A recognized leader in the Data for Good Movement, he has spoken at IBM, Microsoft, Google, and the White House. He is also a PopTech Social Innovation Fellow and a National Geographic Emerging Explorer. He holds a B.S. in Computer Science from Columbia University and an M.S. and Ph.D. in Statistics from UCLA.