Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Big Data for a Better World

This video is presented by UN Global Pulse Director, Robert Kirkpatrick, and in this video, he tells us how to use Big Data to understand human well-being.

The challenge now the organization face is how they track what happens to populations around the world is still stuck back in the twentieth centurythey were still using household surveys and collecting statistics every few years to see what’s happening. In the same time, they have begun asked the question if the private sector is able to transform its own operations, is able to monitor emerging trends in the market in real time, and is able to understand feedback to its customers in real time. In the Big Data revolution, there are three distinct opportunities, the first one is better early warning: earlier detection of anomalies, trends and events allows earlier response; the second one is real-time awareness: a more accurate and up-to-date picture of population needs supports more effective planning and implementation; the third one is real-time feedback: understanding sooner where needs are changing – or are not being met – allows for rapid, adaptive course correction. Big Data is a human rights issue with considering privacy, Big Data never analyze personally identifiable information, Big Data never analyze confidential data, and Big Data never seek to re-identify individuals. 

The data that the mobile phones produce is very interesting, mobile carriers collect call detail records, such as caller ID, caller tower location, receiver ID, call start time and call duration, putting this records in the form, graph and map, you can construct a social graph, you can see the population movements, and you can see the plot trajectories across the map in time, and you can also understand patterns of consumption. In addition, most people choose to buy airtime expense records, such as caller ID, caller tower location, amount of purchase, time of purchase, and balance at time of purchase. In their organization, lots of work using social media analytics in the health space works very well, and lots of work going on in predicting elections has not really worked so well, so now they want to know if these kinds of approaches could use to understand when unemployment spikes, and they use SAS to analyze the data collected from United Sates and Ireland. Global Pulse has been setup in the secretary general’s office to start experimenting with how these new data sources in new analytical approaches and a new technologies can be useful for understanding what’s happening to pull population around the world. Their basic model is the notion of digital services as sensor networks.

In this video, Robert uses several examples to talk about how could Big Data make the world better, and Big Data does not only give the solutions to people’s preference of consuming products and services, but also can tell people’s refection of global stresses, and the effect of several development programs.


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