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Ladies of Data event: bringing diversity into the Data Science and AI community.

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On 15 April, 2021, JADS, together with High Tech Campus and Female Tech Heroes, hosts the second edition of Ladies of Data, an inclusive event for everyone who is interested in Data Science, AI & diversity. We talked to co-organizer and speaker Ksenia Podoynitsyna, Associate Professor of Data-Driven Entrepreneurship at JADS about the increasing power of platforms such as Google, the impact for business and society and why a Ladies of Data event is necessary.

Ksenia Podoynitsyna at last year’s edition of Ladies of Data

Why an event about the Platform Economy?

“For this event, we were looking for a topic on the interface of data science, AI and business. With the upcoming digitization, something that cannot escape our attention is the growing number of platform-based companies. The majority of the world’s top 10-most valued companies are platforms, and this was not the case 15-20 years ago. Platform companies are also able to capture a gigantic amount of value and are getting an almost disproportionate amount of power, both in the market and society. Google, for example, knows more about any average citizen than their own government. This uncomfortable fact makes it even more important to keep discussing and researching platforms. “

“What we also observe is that the nature of competition is changing. More and more companies are trying to launch platforms and that creates interesting and sometimes perverse dynamics. Nobody wants to give away the ownership and keystone role in governing the platforms, but this deteriorates the scaleup of any individual platform. There are really some challenges there that are worth discussing.”

For whom is this event?

“This event could be interesting for researchers but also for managers and data scientist in companies. We aim to paint a complete and diverse picture, in terms of relevance but also in terms of presenters. The JADS philosophy is to do research that matters to business and society. We hope that researchers and companies can learn from and inspire each other. Whether you’re interested in the implications of having a platform as the focal point of your strategy or would like to learn creative tricks when working with data, this event is for you. You can also engage in discussions about how far AI can go: in this discussion session we are connecting a deep learning expert and an ethics expert to explore the middle ground.”

What can visitors expect from the program?

“We have two keynote speakers. One is academic, from TU/e and JADS, and one from a payment platform company, Adyen. Furthermore, you can expect 3 discussion sessions on data science and AI. One of them will be on platforms, the other ones will be on Data Science methods and on how far AI can go.”

Why Ladies of Data?

“Good question. It’s because we find it very important to highlight female speakers and to bring diversity into the Data Science and AI community. What we won’t do is focus on the “Oh, us poor women” discussion, but rather provide female role models and discuss cool topics relevant for the broader data science community. Actually, we think any event should have a good balance between female and male speakers – and we live up to this model. Anyone is very much welcome to attend this event, regardless of gender.”

What are your future ambitions with Ladies of Data?

You can definitely expect more of these events, centered around different subjects in the field of Data Science and AI, and always diverse in terms of discussion panels and keynote speakers. Our ultimate goal is of course that this kind of diversity becomes regular practice. We really hope that in the future, these is simply no need for a Ladies of Data event anymore.

Interested in attending Ladies of Data?

Visit the event page and register


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