10Fold Big Data Horizons- Public Health Benefits, Improving Crop Yields

Mastercard’s Big Data For Good Initiative: Data Philanthropy On The Front Lines

“Data leveraged for the public good”

In 2013 Mastercard launched the ‘Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth,’ an independent organization that acts as a subsidiary of the the Mastercard corporation. The firms stated purpose is to leverage data in a range of social benefit programs.

Testimony from Chairman Walt Macnee addressed the importance of the private and public sector collaboration for public benefit in a may 2017 testimony before the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs; “We will continue to leverage our technology, data, and know-how in an effort to solve many of the world’s most pressing problems. It is the right thing to do, and it is also good for business.” Mastercard believes that there is an opportunity to break down traditional business and data silos to create greater opportunity for social and economic inclusion, which they characterize as “inclusive growth.”

NSF grant aims to use big data to improve crops

“Moving to ensure better yields”

WSU researchers are leading a multi-university effort to improve crop management in the age of big data. Ananth Kalyanaraman, associate professor in the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, leads a team of researchers that have now received a 3-year, $1.2 million grant to aid biologists in sifting through large data stores on categories such as plant traits, environments and more to determine important metrics. The multidisciplinary team intends to focus on improving scientific understanding of the interaction between genes and the environment to create better crop yields.

How big data is transforming workplace skills

“Continuous learning is becoming the new norm”

Sylvia Vorhauser-Smith, Senior Vice President of Research at PageUp, said the shift in workplace culture will enable organisations to move towards self-directed, employee-centric, learning. She told L&D “Organisations that are joining this journey stand to unlock untapped reserves of talent and potential, and ultimately maximise business performance,” and “we expect to see artificial intelligence and augmented/virtual reality play a significant role in the future of learning. The richer the learning experience, the greater will be its adoption and effectiveness,” she said.

Big Data Shows Big Promise in Medicine

“Computers may have surpassed doctors in life-or-death judgements”

In medicine, replacing intuition with machine intelligence can save patients from deadly unintended consequences, such as drug side effects or otherwise incurable cancers. Shirley Pepke, a physicist by training who moved into the field of computational biology,  developed a deadly cancer and responded and fought it using big data. Pepke incorporates her experience to the medical world by claiming that in the future doctors may have to think less statistically and more scientifically. Her doctors made decisions based on statistical information, rather than the individual patients needs and specific circumstances.

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