Eight data scientists selected by Bloomberg participated in the Bloomberg Data for Good Exchange Immersion Day program, with a focus on governance and community-driven missions in major cities in the U.S. and overseas: New York, Philadelphia, Paris and Bogotá, Colombia. The researchers spent several days working with their host organizations to execute a data science project based on specific needs, goals and challenges. Host organizations spanned from government offices to nonprofits in areas like education, technology and healthcare.
Over the course of the program, the collaborations reflected great diversity in terms of needs and objectives. Working together with Bloomberg Associates, some of the data scientists aimed to help city government successfully tackle complex and difficult challenges to positively impact the quality of life of their citizens. For example, the team in Paris worked to create a new dashboard to better understand how key performance metrics are achieved, with the goal of helping the city with its plans to launch new, publicly-supported civic spaces for startups. In Bogotá, they created a bridge between citizens and the city’s administration, helping directors and heads of citizen services better understand and visualize complaints from residents.
Some of the other data scientists partnered with nonprofits in the U.S. to help them find new ways to leverage their existing data to improve their delivery of services. For example, outside Philadelphia, healthcare nonprofit Bringing Hope Home, which works to provide assistance to families with cancer, explored how to use data science to shorten the wait time for services. And three of the projects were based in New York City. One researcher worked with continuing education nonprofit Matriculate to build a real-time data platform to better communicate with high achieving high school students from low income communities. Another worked with Grand Central Partnership, one of the largest business improvement districts in the world, better understand how consumers interact with various assets (e.g., benches, light poles, trash cans, etc.) in this busy portion of midtown Manhattan to better ensure their upkeep. And lastly, a team at iMentor, a nonprofit that pairs industry executives with high school students for professional training, built a neural network to weigh performance evaluation data from mentors and determine how likely their student participants are to find career success.
During this panel session, participating Immersion Day data scientists and leaders from their host organizations discussed their projects and lessons learned with NYC Media Lab Executive Director Justin Hendrix.
Panelists – Part 1:
• Grand Central Partnership: Rochelle Patricof, Vice President for Administration & Operations and Yuan Lai, Ph.D. Candidate in Civil & Urban Engineering, New York University
• City of Paris: Jean-Philippe Clement, Chief Data Officer, City of Paris and Ysée Rogé, Ph.D., Data Scientist, OpenDataSoft
• City of Bogotá, Columbia: Jaime Torres-Melo, Ombudsman, City of Bogotá; Juan Felipe Yepes, Public Innovation Lab Coordinator, City of Bogotá; and Xavier Ignacio Gonzalez, Data Scientist and Ph.D. Candidate, Columbia University
Panelists – Part 2:
• iMentor: Leah Glass, Senior Research & Evaluation Analyst; Eugene Bagdasaryan, Ph.D. Student in Computer Science, Cornell Tech; and Michael Sobolev, Post-doctoral Fellow, Cornell Tech
• Matriculate: Madeline Kerner, CEO & Co-Founder and Bhavya Ghai, Ph.D. Student in Computer Science, Stony Brook University
• Bringing Hope Home (BHH): Paul Isenberg, Founder & CEO and Vincent Major, Ph.D. Student in Medical Informatics, New York University’s School of Medicine
Moderator: Justin Hendrix – Executive Director, NYC Media Lab
Learn more about the Data for Good Exchange at https://www.bloomberg.com/d4gx. #d4gx