Big Data Social Science: Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship

The Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) program at Penn State aims to create a new kind of scientist; one capable of meeting the challenges and demands of up and coming big data endeavors. In recent years, new sources of data have emerged as a result of new advances in large scale technology. Along with this data, the need for data scientists and professional analytic teams has also emerged. BDSS-IGERT projects a new curriculum, and offers training in advanced technologies of data science and analytics in both academic and nonacademic settings.

“A recent report estimated that big data contain unexploited economic value over $1 trillion annually, but that 165,000 positions in “deep analytics” will need to be filled. Government statistics agencies need to produce useful statistical products, at lower cost, while protecting confidentiality. Big data technologies like crisis mapping present opportunities to address grand social challenges. Further, the BDSS-IGERT project expands the participation of underrepresented groups in data science, by combining an exciting new field with a focus on diversity as a research theme.”

This program is designed to meet the challenge of educating U.S. Ph.D. scientists and engineers with the technical, professional, and personal skills needed for the career demands of a future in big data. As a pioneer of this type of education, BDSS hopes to establish new training models specific to this field, that can be expanded upon and distributed on a national scale. Read more about BDSS and IGERT training opportunities here.

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