Andrew Ng Fireside Chat – Sign Up Now!

We are incredibly honoured and excited to be hosting Andrew Ng for a fireside chat on 10th February at 6.30pm (Sign up here) Many data scientists’ first encounter with Andrew Ng was through his Stanford University machine learning course – which has enrolled almost 4m people! However, some may be unaware that his contribution toContinue reading “Andrew Ng Fireside Chat – Sign Up Now!”

Andrew Ng at the RSS Data Science Section!

We are going to have the great honour of hosting a fireside chat with Andrew Ng in February. The Data Science Section of the Royal Statistical Society have invited Andrew to come and talk to us about how technical people can become leaders in artificial intelligence and data science. Andrew needs little introduction to theContinue reading “Andrew Ng at the RSS Data Science Section!”

November Newsletter

Hi everyone- It’s all go… US Presidential Elections, second waves, third tiers and second lockdowns, all while struggling to maintain some semblance of professionalism for the next Zoom call… Definitely time for ‘self-care’ via some selected data science reading materials! Following is the November edition of our Royal Statistical Society Data Science Section newsletter. HopefullyContinue reading “November Newsletter”

This pandemic belief is mad, bad and dangerous to know

I know reality doesn’t matter anymore. I get that beliefs no longer require an underlying connection to facts about the world. I’ve made my peace with all of that. Because, generally speaking, I don’t care what you think. If you want to believe that 5G towers can spread viruses, be my guest. But a falseContinue reading “This pandemic belief is mad, bad and dangerous to know”

How not to lose 16,000 COVID-19 test results: a data scientist’s view

A critical piece of the UK Test and Trace infrastructure failed hard this week. All contacts of almost 16,000 COVID-19 infected people were allowed to circulate unknowingly for an entire seven days in the community. That’s about 50,000 people. I’m not going to complain about Public Health England (PHE) using excel to merge the testContinue reading “How not to lose 16,000 COVID-19 test results: a data scientist’s view”

October Newsletter

Hi everyone- As the rain pours down it definitely feels like winter has arrived- all the more reason to spend some time indoors huddled up with some good data science reading materials! Following is the October edition of our Royal Statistical Society Data Science Section newsletter. Hopefully some interesting topics and titbits to feed yourContinue reading “October Newsletter”

Lessons on Algorithm ethics from UK Exam algorithm story

This document chronicles the recent controversy surrounding the UK exams fiasco where an algorithmic approach was rejected and demonstrates areas where those building and deploying models must be vigilant and have training, process and governance in placeGiles Pavey – September 2021 Background In March 2020, the UK Government made the significant policy in response toContinue reading “Lessons on Algorithm ethics from UK Exam algorithm story”

Ethics Happy Hours

Announcing our new Data Science Section Initiative: Share and discuss ethical challenges encountered in your professional life during Ethics Happy Hours Ethical questions are ubiquitous in pursuing real-world data science projects. During the Covid-19 crisis, controversies around the design of contact tracing apps or the moderation of GCSE and A-level results have recently served asContinue reading “Ethics Happy Hours”

September Newsletter

Hi everyone- Another month flies by… hard to believe summer is technically over although the coldest August UK bank holiday on record is one way to drive home the point! Following is the September edition of our Royal Statistical Society Data Science Section newsletter. Hopefully some interesting topics and titbits to feed your data scienceContinue reading “September Newsletter”

August Newsletter

Hi everyone- Let’s face it, July was a bit lacking in sunshine but at least ended with a couple of scorchers. Possibly not the best conditions to be pulling together a newsletter, but we’d always take the sun over rain! Following is the August edition of our Royal Statistical Society Data Science Section newsletter. HopefullyContinue reading “August Newsletter”

July Newsletter

Hi everyone- Well, we have made it to summer (at least the British variety) – and it’s time for the July edition of our Royal Statistical Society Data Science Section newsletter. Hopefully some interesting topics and titbits to feed your data science curiosity while enjoying a socially distanced day on the beach with everyone else…Continue reading “July Newsletter”

Data Science Needs Technical Managers

We believe a lack of data scientists in leadership roles is a major reason why organisations don’t get value from data science. Our recent survey has shown that data scientists with a manager from a data science background are more likely to feel they’re delivering value for an organisation. Last year we conducted a surveyContinue reading “Data Science Needs Technical Managers”

The effectiveness of cloth masks has been misrepresented by #Masks4All

I recently advised caution about COVID-19 research performed by people without a background in infectious diseases. Some people hated that advice. I’m going to show an example of why it matters. In recent weeks, entrepreneur Jeremy Howard has led the #Masks4All campaign to make it mandatory to wear cotton face masks in public. Howard claimsContinue reading “The effectiveness of cloth masks has been misrepresented by #Masks4All”

April Newsletter

Hi everyone- What a month… the end of February seems like an age ago, and life for everyone has changed beyond comprehension since then. The dramatic rise of the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the crucial underlying importance of rigourous analytical methods to both understand what is going on, and to inform decisions around the bestContinue reading “April Newsletter”

All models are wrong, but some are completely wrong

At this critical time in the modern history of the human race, mathematical models have been pushed into the foreground. Epidemic forecasting informs policy and even individual decision-making. Sadly, scientists and journalists have completely failed to communicate how these models work. Last week the Financial Times published the headline ‘Coronavirus may have infected half ofContinue reading “All models are wrong, but some are completely wrong”