Next week, Brock will join universities around the world to recognize the growing importance of data.
The Brock Library will host a range of events exploring data equity and inclusion, disciplinary communities and creating a kinder world through data during International Love Data Week, which takes place from Monday, Feb. 12 to Friday, Feb. 16.
Data Services Librarian Nicole Stradiotto says International Love Data Week is a chance to highlight the importance of data literacy and the creative ways researchers can use data.
“Data is often understood as ‘pure’ information without context,” says Stradiotto. “But to actually work with data well in any field, you really have to grasp the social meanings that are embedded in the way it’s created, disseminated and put to work. You have to ask who collected it, why it was collected and who benefits from it. If you want to perform quality research, or understand others’ research, you can’t shy away from these complexities.”
The week of in-person and virtual events kicks off with a presentation titled “Queer Data Studies” by University of Toronto Associate Professor of Information and Cinema Studies Patrick Keilty on Monday, Feb. 12 from noon to 1 p.m. in RFP 214.
“This presentation is important because our lives are increasingly structured by data economies. While this is true for everybody, queer people have long had to negotiate opacity and visibility in ways that are relevant for data politics today,” Keilty says. “We can learn from these queer histories about how to form an ethical approach to data.”
The International Love Data Week schedule includes:
- Monday, Feb. 12 — Queer Data Studies: Taking place from noon to 1 p.m. in the Rankin Family Pavilion, this interdisciplinary presentation will challenge participants to rethink how the extraction, circulation, modelling, governance and use of data affects queer subjects and to consider how the power of data might be harnessed in the service of queer ethics. For room information and to RSVP, visit ExperienceBU.
- Tuesday, Feb. 13 — Introduction to APIs and Web Scraping for Research Data Collection: Taking place from noon to 1 p.m. online, this workshop will help participants discover new data collection tools for research. Technologies discussed will include both no-code options, such as Parsehub and Webscraper.io, and options requiring some coding, such as Python and the Python package Beautiful Soup. RSVP on ExperienceBU.
- Wednesday, Feb. 14 — Finding Geospatial Data: Taking place from 2 to 3:30 p.m. online, this workshop will explore finding geodata through open data portals as well as using and analyzing some of the layers in the ArcGIS Online environment. RSVP on ExperienceBU.
- Thursday, Feb. 15 — Finding Census Data with Statistics Canada: Taking place from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. online, this discussion with Elizabeth Nash from Statistics Canada will discuss tools and resources that will help users access summary census information from 1665 to 2021, find modern data and access Odesi and CHASS. RSVP on ExperienceBU.