Keynote | Managing Data Throughout the Research Life Cycle to Enable New Science and Support Decision-Making

The research landscape is rapidly evolving and there are growing expectations by funders, scientists and decision-makers that data will be accessible and usable for data synthesis efforts, new convergent science activities, and evidence-based decision-making. Research success is increasingly tied to how well data are managed throughout the research data life cycle. This talk focuses on tools, principles and approaches that can be employed to empower research within and across science domains. Examples are drawn from three international research efforts: (1) the creation of Essential Biodiversity Variables (EBV) to assist nations and regions in assessing success in attaining sustainable development goals; (2) implementation of the Ocean Health Index which is used to track trends in the health of the world’s oceans; and (3) a new global CODATA/International Science Council (ISC) initiative to improve data interoperability in the areas of infectious disease monitoring, disaster risk mitigation, and resilient cities. Numerous tools, mostly open source, are highlighted that support all elements of the research data life cycle. The Ocean Health Index project exemplifies how new tools and open science approaches accelerated the pace of science. The EBV and CODATA/ISC projects have led to the identification of best practice principles that cover: data management planning, data structure, metadata, services, data quality, workflows, provenance, ontologies and vocabularies, data preservation, and accessibility. Takeaway lessons from this talk include a better understanding of convergent science, exposure to new tools and services that one can use to more effectively and efficiently manage research data, and best practice principles for creating data products that can be more readily used to support cross-disciplinary research and decision-making.

William Michener is Professor and Director of e-Science Initiatives at the University of New Mexico’s College of University Libraries & Learning Sciences. He directs New Mexico’s National Science Foundation (NSF) and Department of Energy EPSCoR (Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research) Programs, and Data Observation Network for Earth (DataONE)—a large cyberinfrastructure project supported by NSF. He is involved in research related to creating information technologies supporting data-intensive science, development of federated data systems, and community engagement and education. Over the past three years, his research has focused on international efforts to streamline the creation of Essential Biodiversity Variables and improve data interoperability in support of interdisciplinary research. He has a PhD in Biological Oceanography from the University of South Carolina and has published extensively in ecology, information science and marine science. He serves on several non-profit Boards and is Editor of Ecological Archives, and Associate Editor for Ecological Informatics.


Morning Panel

Facilitator | Teresa Miguel-Stearns, Law Librarian and Professor of Law, Lillian Goldman Law Library, Yale Law School

Talk Information TBD | Tracey Meares

Tracey L. Meares is the Walton Hale Hamilton Professor and a Founding Director of the Justice Collaboratory at the Yale Law School. From 1995 to 2007, she was a professor at the University of Chicago Law School, where she served as the Max Pam Professor and Director of the Center for Studies in Criminal Justice. She is a nationally recognized expert on policing in urban communities, and her research focuses on understanding how members of the public think about their relationship(s) with legal authorities such as police, prosecutors, and judges. She has served on the National Academy of Sciences Committee on Law and Justice, a National Research Council standing committee, and the Science Advisory Board of the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs. Professor Meares also served as a member of President Obama’s Task force on 21st Century Policing.

Using Qualitative and Mixed Methods Data to Access Human Experiences of Health and Illness | Dena Schulman-Green

We are perhaps most human during transitions between health and illness. In conducting health-related research, we can collect data in the form of words, numbers, or both. How can we best gather and use these data to gain insight into and address these fundamental human experiences?

Dena Schulman-Green, PhD is an Associate Professor in the Division of Acute Care and Health Systems at Yale School of Nursing. She received a BA in Psychology from Boston University, a MA and EdM in Counseling Psychology from Columbia University, and a MS and PhD in Gerontology from University of Massachusetts Boston. She completed a post-doctoral fellowship in Oncology and End-of-Life Care at Yale School of Nursing in 2002. Dr. Schulman-Green’s program of research focuses on the timely integration of palliative care into patient and family management of chronic illness. She is currently testing two companion interventions which are designed to help women with breast cancer and their family caregivers to manage cancer together. Dr. Schulman-Green’s work has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, the American Cancer Society, and the National Palliative Care Research Center, among others. She is the author of over 65 publications.

Dr. Schulman-Green serves as a consultant in qualitative and mixed methods research across Yale University as well as at other institutions, including Harvard/Hebrew SeniorLife in Boston, MA and Mt. Sinai School of Medicine in New York, NY. She coordinates the qualitative and mixed methods arm of the Center for Biobehavioral Health Research at Yale School of Nursing. Dr. Schulman-Green routinely lectures on interview and focus groups methodologies, particularly their application to vulnerable populations.

As part of her teaching and mentoring at Yale, Dr. Schulman-Green is faculty for the Hospice and Palliative Medicine Fellowship Program and for the Interprofessional Palliative Care Education Program. She is active in the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine on various committees and is Vice Chair of the Palliative Care Research Cooperative Group Membership Committee. Among her honors, she has been the recipient of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization Research Award and Yale School of Nursing’s Annie W. Goodrich Award for Excellence in Teaching.

Satellite Imagery to Uncover an Urbanizing Planet | Karen Seto

The world is rapidly urbanizing. Between 2000 and 2050, the world’s urban population will grow by about 2.5 billion, an addition of about 170,000 people a day. To accommodate this growing urban population, urban areas are expanding by 20,000 American football fields — equal to adding a city the size of Providence, Rhode Island — to the world every day. This talk will discuss the resilience of urban areas as well as the imprint of urbanization on the world’s ecosystems, farmlands, climate, and biodiversity: all seen from space.

Karen Seto is the Frederick C. Hixon Professor of Geography and Urbanization Science and Senior Associate Dean for Research at the School of Forestry and Environmental Studies at Yale University. Trained as a geographer, she is an urban and land change scientist whose central research focus is how urbanization will affect the planet. She is an expert in urbanization and global environmental change, urban mitigation of climate change, and satellite remote sensing. She has pioneered methods to reconstruct urban land use with satellite imagery and has developed novel methods to forecast the expansion of urban areas. She has conducted urbanization research in China for twenty years and in India for more than ten. Her research has generated new insights on urban land use patterns and sustainability, the interaction between urbanization and food systems, the effects of urban expansion on biodiversity and cropland loss, urban energy use and emissions, and urban mitigation of climate change.

Professor Seto was a Coordinating Lead Author for the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report and will be a Coordinating Lead Author for the IPCC Sixth Assessment Report. For both IPCC reports, she co-lead the chapter on urban mitigation of climate change. She is co-editor-in-chief of the journal, Global Environmental Change. She was co-founder and co-chair of the Urbanization and Global Environmental Change Project (UGEC), an international science project that framed, enabled, and coordinated urban and global change research from 2006 to 2016 with more than 1,000 affiliates in over 50 countries. She is an elected member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the Connecticut Academy of Science and Engineering, and the U.S. National Academy of Sciences.


Afternoon Panel

Facilitator | Eli Fenichel, Associate Professor of Bioeconomics & Ecosystem Management in the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies

Eli Fenichel studies how people allocate natural resources through time and how they can do it better. A key part of this research is imputing natural capital asset prices, which goes into modern sustainability measurement, and this is often a data-intensive effort. He teaches applied math for environmental studies among other courses, and as a teacher, he is concerned about a skills and human capital gap among the needs, abilities, and opportunities for environmental professionals to harness data and computation to steward the environment for future generations.

Searching for another Earth in Noisy Data | Jessi Cisewski

Recent years have seen a proliferation in the number of exoplanets (planets orbiting stars outside our Solar System) discovered. One technique for uncovering exoplanets relies on the detection of subtle shifts in the stellar spectra due to the Doppler effect caused by an orbiting object; however, stellar activity can cause distortions in the spectra that mimic the imprint of an orbiting exoplanet. She will discuss some statistical issues related to separating the stellar "noise" from a planetary signal.

Jessi Cisewski-Kehe is currently an assistant professor in the Department of Statistics and Data Science at Yale University. Previously she spent three years as a visiting assistant professor in the Department of Statistics at Carnegie Mellon University after completing her Ph.D. in Statistics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Professor Cisewski-Kehe is the co-founder and current chair of the Astrostatistics Interest Group of the American Statistical Association and is serving as the Vice President for NextGen group of the New England Statistical Society.

Big Data and Human Trafficking | William Casey King

Human trafficking has been described as the largest human rights violation in the history of mankind. The estimated twenty-seven million enslaved individuals represent the highest number of slaves in human history. This talk looks at the role of big data in anti-human trafficking. Dr. King will discuss how Yale undergraduate students from the Global Affairs Capstone program have used creative big data analyses and humanist intuition to contribute to the fight against human trafficking.

William Casey King is the Director of the Capstone Program and a lecturer at Yale’s Jackson Institute for Global Affairs. His research focuses on the nexus of national security and technology. King is a recipient of several grants from the Defense Research Projects Administration (DARPA), including a “big data” grant as part of the White House’s Big Data Initiative (XDATA); a grant to measure and combat radicalism in social media (QCR); and is co-leader of a DARPA seedling effort on financial warfare. He has consulted to the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, the FBI, and the Securities and Exchange Commission. At Yale, he teaches courses on big data and global policies, anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing, and anti-human trafficking. He is currently a member of a Connecticut United States Attorney’s Office Task Force assisting with investigation of human trafficking in children. He is the author of a book on the history of ambition (Ambition, A History, Yale University Press).


Tsai CITY Talk | Data Innovation, Entrepreneurship, and the Role of Virtual and Augmented Reality

The Yale Tsai Center for Innovative Thinking (Tsai CITY) engages with innovation and entrepreneurship across disciplines at the university. Members of Tsai CITY will present on the role of their center and highlight data-intensive projects from both the academic and startup sides of their programming.

Martin Wainstein is an Innovator in Residence at the Tsai Center for Innovative Thinking at Yale, where he leads the Yale Open Innovation Lab. He is also a research associate in the Yale Department of Electrical Engineering and a research affiliate in the MIT Media Lab. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Melbourne’s Australian-German Climate and Energy College. He is active in a variety of entrepreneurship projects related to sustainability.

Sophie Janaskie is an Environmental Innovation Fellow, coappointed at Tsai CITY and at the Yale Center for Business and the Environment. She works on environmental entrepreneurship at Yale and is a graduate of both Yale College and the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. She has previously served as a Fellow with Venture for America, a two-year program that provides training for entrepreneurs.


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