Data Science is concerned with all aspects of the creation, management, and analysis of data, focusing in particular on the application of computational methods to digital data. Researchers, educators, and students from nearly every discipline across the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign already incorporate Data Science into their academic lives. There is no end to the areas where Data Science has made an impact—whether it’s text analytics, data-driven business intelligence, computational biomedicine, precision agriculture, multi-messenger astronomy, or any number of the other cutting-edge Illinois research themes. At the same time, as all aspects of our lives become inextricably data-driven, our Illinois community is passionate about bringing deeper and richer Data Science principals, collaborations, and resources to our campus. We want every member of our community to have the Data Science tools they need to solve any critical and seemingly intractable problem.
To move the campus forward, we’ve established an Illinois Data Science Initiative (iDSI). The first priority of the iDSI is to listen to the people it aims to serve: our Illinois students, researchers on campus, industry and government partners, and the public at large. Whether you’re a Data Science novice or a Data Science expert, we want you to be involved in this initiative. The iDSI is devoting all of 2017 to identifying challenges, opportunities, and potential collaborations through a series of campus summits centered on core research themes. By the year’s end, the iDSI’s goal is to articulate an implementable plan for integrating and elevating Data Science on our campus. This plan will position us to scale up into a cross-cutting, full-fledged Data Science program serving the Illinois community and it’s educational, governmental, and industrial partners.
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