Call for Proposals issued for May workshop on mobile health technologies

The South Big Data Hub (SBDH), in collaboration with the National Consortium for Data Science (NCDS), will convene a workshop on May 15-16 at UNC-Chapel Hill to identify and prioritize research challenges in data science cyberinfrastructure (CI) to enable mobile health (mHealth) applications to address environmental health and related healthcare challenges in the Southern United States.

The proposed workshop will bring together an interdisciplinary group of experts to understand the requirements, architectures, and approaches for mHealth CI. The workshop will explore existing research to understand: What is the state of the art in mHealth CI? How do these architectures deal with potential roadblocks, such as privacy, security, and ethics?

The South Hub and the NCDS would like to invite graduate students in mHealth to apply to participate in the workshop.

EligibilityStudents should be pursuing advanced degrees in data science, mobile health technologies, relevant domain science, or healthcare.

Financial Stipend: The South Hub will cover the actual cost of travel, hotel, and food during the two-day workshop, as per UNC-CH guidelines.

Students can apply by submitting a 1-page position paper. Papers should be submitted by April 7, 2017 at 11:59 PM Eastern Time.

Read more about the workshop and submit your application here. Questions should be directed to sdavis@renci.org

NSF Announces Second Phase of BD Hub Spoke Awards

NSF-logoAs many in the South Big Data Hub community know, our Hub is one of four regional Hubs established by the National Science Foundation in 2015 to foster data science collaborations among academia, industry and government, both in the U.S. and internationally. In 2016, the NSF expanded the BD Hubs’ network by supporting multi-sector and multi-institutional collaborations focused on using data to address regional challenges.

That support translated into BD Hub “Spoke” awards for research addressing regional problems, and several Spoke awards were given to researchers within the states that comprise the South Hub (click here for information on those awards).

This week, the NSF issued a Call for Proposals for round two of the BD Hub Spoke Awards to be funded in FY 2018. The solicitation is not meant to fund proposals in which fundamental research is the primary activity. Instead, BD Hub Spoke proposals should be guided by the following broad themes:  Continue reading

Expert panelists to discuss bots, lies, and the new information environment

The explosion of social media, blogs, and websites purporting to be news sources, along with a 24-hour news cycle and ubiquitous assess to the internet from cell phones and other devices, means a new information environment. That environment is radically different from the days when we depended on the New York Times and local newspapers for information, and it is rewriting the norms of social interaction, conversation, public discourse, and news reporting.

Continue reading

New Report Looks at Strategies for Building a Data Economy

screen-shot-2017-02-24-at-5-27-39-pmTwo groups with a keen interest in data science –the North Carolina Board of Science, Technology & Innovation and the National Consortium for Data Science—have teamed up to produce a report that examines what the Tar Heel state needs to do to be a leader in the emerging data economy.

The report, NC in the Next Tech Tsumani: Navigating the Data Economy, says North Carolina has the raw assets to build a world-class data economy, including top-tier universities and thriving business sectors in technology, life sciences and finance.  However, those assets must be nurtured through a focus on data science education, data literacy, support for data-focused startups, and a coordinated effort to present the state as a data leader.   Continue reading

Hackathon in Rocket City (Huntsville, AL) focuses on flood management

screen-shot-2017-02-17-at-10-57-54-amWe can’t control Mother Nature, but we can use data to mitigate some of her more destructive occurrences, including floods.

That’s the premise behind a hackathon sponsored by the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency (NGA) and the city of Huntsville, AL. The hackathon, to be held Feb. 25 and 26, will give software developers, policymakers, public safety officials, business leaders, and other creative problem solvers the chance to make a difference in how communities prepare for and respond to dangerous floods.   Continue reading

South Hub Sponsors Data Science for Social Good Summer Program 2017

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By Arjun Sawhney, South Big Data Hub
SawhneyArjun@gmail.com

South Big Data Hub is partnering with Data Science for Social Good- Atlanta to bring nine graduate students from various southern states to participate in a ten-week paid internship experience. The program would place undergraduate and graduate students in multidisciplinary teams to work under the supervision of a Georgia Tech faculty mentor on a problem that comes from a local government or nonprofit partner in the Atlanta metro area. Mentors from the local data science practitioner community will provide additional guidance and support. Continue reading

Join the conversation on building data science capacity

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Participants in the Federal Data in Action Summit express their views on key data questions by moving around the room, with those on each side representing opposite ends of a spectrum and those in the middle representing the middle ground.

December Summit launched conversation—now we want your thoughts

By Tim J. Gabel, @timgabel
Executive Vice President, RTI International

I had the pleasure of attending the December 15, 2016 Federal Data in Action Summit in Washington DC. The meeting was co-hosted by a team that included the National Science Foundation, the four Big Data Regional Innovation Hubs, and the Department of Homeland Security. It was a chance to spend an afternoon with an extraordinary collection of thought leaders, practitioners, and government agency representatives. The focus of the day – to “share lessons learned and best practices for building data science capacity” – is of great relevance to organizations and the U.S. economy. Continue reading

Chinese scientists get a taste of data-driven research at U.S. State Department-sponsored visit

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Chinese and American scientists take a break for a group photo during an afternoon of discussion on data analytics in environmental sciences.

Science, and the process of sharing scientific knowledge and ideas to solve problems, knows no national or political boundaries. That’s why when a group of Chinese scientists visited RENCI as guests of the South Big Data Hub, the discussion was lively, timely, and productive. Continue reading

Panel examines the role of data in public and environmental health

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Panelists and audience members participate in the South Big Data Hub roundtable on data analytics in environmental health both remotely and in person.

The South Big Data Hub Roundtable held on January 11 in Chapel Hill, NC, provided an open discussion forum with a focus on Translational Data Analytics for Environmental Health.

Ashok Krishnamurthy, PhD, moderated the discussion, which included panelists Andy May, PhD, an assistant professor in the department of civil, environmental, and geodetic engineering at The Ohio State University, Ayaz Hyder, PhD, assistant professor in the Division of Environmental Health Sciences at Ohio State’s College of Public Health, David Peden, PhD,  a distinguished professor at the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Medicine, and Paul Kizakevich, PhD, a senior research engineer in the bioinformatics program at RTI International. Continue reading

A state of the union panel discussion on Apache Spark/Big Data innovation

img_0647On January 19, MetiStream hosted our meetup: The Washington DC Apache Spark Interactive and held a State of the Union Panel Discussion on Apache Spark Big Data Innovation. A fitting topic given the transition of power in Washington that happened the next day. We firmly believe that a consistent focus on big data powers innovation and keeps America strong and distinctive.Our technology meetups shepard this innovation by bringing the community together to learn and share knowledge, network, and find opportunities for our members. Yes, we may be a roomful of geeks…but this is what we do. This is fun for us! Continue reading