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Thursday, May 2 • 8:30am - 9:00am
Opening Insights - geography is the secret sauce in making big data usable!

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We live in an era of evidence-based decision-making. Businesses and governments alike are expected to use data and technology to make better and smarter decisions. But how well analysts use the wide variety of available data is the single biggest contributor to the outcome. Normalizing, weighting, standardizing, anonymizing and integrating all types of data to transform them into insights—that’s the challenge. Data scientists require in-depth knowledge of how the data were assembled, what is allowed under both the law and “good ethics” and what methods are best suited to which business problems.

In our view at Environics Analytics, GIS and spatial analysis experts have demonstrated over the past three decades that geography is the secret sauce in making big data usable. The popular tagline from Esri in the ’90s—“everything happens somewhere”—has never been more timely. Whether analysts are looking at overtly spatial problems or just trying to get an integrated view of citizens and patrons, spatial analysis is an underused “best practice” in privacy-compliant and accurate data transformation.

And when we are looking at the development of SMART cities, the data sources and technology can be the foundation of transformative thinking. At BeSpatial 2019 the world of public policy, technology, methodology, ethics and program delivery will come together in a single event with people and topics crossing the “silos”. The data are there. The tech is there. The question is whether the will is there to change the culture and move us forward to SMART? Join the dialogue—help make it happen.

avatar for Jan Kestle

Jan Kestle

President, Environics Analytics Group
Jan Kestle has been a leader in the marketing information industry for more than forty years. An expert in using statistics and mathematics to help solve business challenges, she directed the initiatives that led to the creation of EA’s PRIZM5 segmentation system, WealthScapes financial... Read More →

Thursday May 2, 2019 8:30am - 9:00am EDT
Ballroom 1 & 2