The University of Pittsburgh has recently announced that academic year 2021-22 will be the Year of Data and Society and that SCI Teaching Assistant Professor Eleanor "Nora" Mattern will chair this initiative. The theme builds on the Data Science Task Force report issued last year and provides a platform for launching some of its central recommendations, which include increasing the reputation, visibility, and awareness of responsible data science within and outside the Pitt community, requiring every undergraduate student to acquire a basic understanding of data and data methods, creating inclusive educational programs to offer training in data science, and implementing a structure that knits together people and practices in data science.
"The Year of Data and Society will bring the Pitt community together to build an understanding of the social implications of data and the layered ethical, social justice, and policy issues present in data collection and use," Mattern said. "This theme is deeply relevant to all of us at the University of Pittsburgh — as students, educators, researchers, and citizens, we can be responsible data practitioners and use data in ways that benefit the public good. I'm honored to be chairing the Year of Data and Society Committee and to have the opportunity to work with and learn from our community as we explore socially responsible and impactful data practices."
Mattern teaches in the Department of Information Culture and Data Stewardship, and she is the Director of the Sara Fine Institute, which promotes social research on digital technologies at the University of Pittsburgh. Her teaching and research interests include archives and digital curation, community-centered information work, civic engagement, and information policy and ethics.
Please join us in congratulating Nora on this exciting endeavor!