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Critical Thinking in Data Science Ethics & Justice (DSEJ): Speaker Series

Ethical Data Science and Urban Justice

Prof. Karen Chapple

The Urban Displacement Project (

UC Berkeley

Event Zoom Link:

The availability of new forms of data on different aspects of everyday life, analyzed and shared via new data analytics, has created an opportunity to depart from the old routines of data collection, cleaning, variable construction, and regression analysis. Working with fine-grained, real-time data has inspired a new generation of researchers eager to design smarter cities (despite the cautions of critical urban theorists). But few have examined how new forms of found data offer the potential to rethink urban policies that are built on outdated assumptions and data — and often lead to inequitable outcomes. In this talk I use the lens of my Urban Displacement Project to explore how new sources of data, such as geotagged Twitter data, upend our traditional understandings of neighborhood change, while also facilitating new forms of participatory action research and global comparative case studies. At the same time, big data and analytics may reinforce existing inequities in urban policy and landscapes. Understanding of local context, as well as the ability to integrate data and information from multiple perspectives, will prove critical to understanding — and transforming — how cities reproduce power in the age of data.

Cosponsored by the TCC Professional Development Network in DSEJ, the Scripps College Data Science Minor, the Pitzer College Mathematics Department, the Keck Science Department, the Pomona College Mathematics Department, Honnold Library, and the Office of Consortial Academic Collaboration at TCC.