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What was the School of Data Network up to in 2015?

- December 28, 2015 in 2015, community, Data Journalism, fellowship, impact, Roundup, school of data network

The School of Data Network is formed by member organisations, individuals, fellows and senior fellows around the world

The School of Data Network is formed by member organisations, individuals, fellows and senior fellows around the world

We just can’t believe it’s already the end of the year! I mean, every year you see people saying the months passed by so fast, but we really mean it! There was a lot going on in our community, from the second edition of our Fellowship Program to many exciting events and activities our members organised around the world. Let’s start with folks at Code4SA. They coordinated the activities of three open data fellows and are organising the first physical Data Journalism School of the continent! Isn’t that amazing? They’re actually creating a space for people to work together with on-site support on data journalism skills. This is the first time this happens in the School of Data network and we’re really proud Code4SA is taking the lead on that! But they didn’t stop it there. They also participated in the Africa Open Data Conference, coordinated trainings and skillshares with NU & BlackSash and ran two three-day Bootcamps (Cape Town and Johannesburg). “One of our biggest challenges this year has been establishing a mandate to work with the government”, said Jennifer Walker, from Code4SA. “On the Data Journalism School, the challenge is really getting everything in place, the newsroom, the trainer etc.”
The group will pursue the project of setting up the first data-journalism agency in Macedonia (Dona Dzambaska - CC-by-sa 3.0)

In Macedonia, this group will pursue the project of setting up the first data-journalism agency in the country (Dona Dzambaska – CC-by-sa 3.0)

In Macedonia, our friends at Metamorphosis Foundation had their second School of Data Fellow, Goran Rizaov. Together with Dona Djambaska, senior School of Data Fellow (2014), they organised four open data meetups, and two 2-day open data trainings, including a data journalism workshop with local journalists in Skopje. They also launched a call for applications that resulted in Goran supporting three local NGOs in open data projects. They also supported the Institute for Rural Communities and the PIU Institute with data clinics. And if that was not enough, Dona and Goran were special guests speakers at the TEDxBASSalon. Open Knowledge Spain and Open Knowledge Greece also were busy coordinating School of Data in their respective countries. In Spain, Escuela de Datos participated in a data journalism conference leading workshops for three days and a hackathon. They also ran monthly meeting with people interested in exploring data; they call it “open data maker nights” and also our own “data expeditions.” They will have a couple of meeting early January to set the goals for 2016. Greece organised an open science training event and also servers as the itersection between open data and linked data, coming from people working at the University of Greece. In France, Ecole des Données has organised three activities in Paris: a local urban data laboratory, a School of Data training and the Budget Democracy Laboratory, both for the city hall. They also developed a DatavizCard Game and coordinate a working group around data visualisation. Our French friends also took part in a series of events, such as workshops, conferences, debates and MeetUps. You can check out the list here. In 2016 they want to do more collaboration with other countries and will participate in the SuperDemain (digital culture for children and families) and Futur en Seien 2016 events.
Camila Salazar & Julio Lopez, 2015 School of Data Fellows, organised a series of workshops in Latin America

Camila Salazar & Julio Lopez, 2015 School of Data Fellows, organised a series of workshops in Latin America

Across the Atlantic we arrive in the Latin American Escuela de Datos, coordinated by SocialTIC, in Mexico. Camila Salazar and Julio Lopez, two fellows from the class of 2015 did amazing things in the region, such as organasing 23 training events in four different countries (Ecuador, Costa Rica, Chile and Mexico), reaching out to more than 400 people. Julio is working with the Natural Resource Governance Institute on a major project about extractives data (stay tuned for news!) and Camila was hired by Costa Rica’s biggest data journalism team at La Nación, on top of developing a project about migrant data in the country. They’re on fire! You will hear more from them on our annual report that’s coming out early next year. “Our biggest challenge now will be having more trainers comming out of the community”, said Juan Manuel Casanueva, from SocialTIC.
Escola de Dados (Brazil) instructors and participants in a workshop about data journalism and government spending data, in São Paulo

Escola de Dados (Brazil) instructors and participants in a workshop about data journalism and government spending data, in São Paulo

Heading down to South America we see that brasileiros at Escola de Dados, in Brazil, are also on fire. They organised 22 workshops, trainings and talks/events reaching out to over 760 people in universities, companies and even government agencies. Two of their intructors were invited by the Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas to organise and run the first 100% in Portuguese MOOC about Data Journalism, with the support from the National Newspaper Association and Google. In total, 4989 people enrolled for the course which was a massive success. They also organised a data analysis course for Folha de S.Paulo, biggest broadsheet newspaper in the country. Next year is looking even better, according to Natália Mazotte, Escola de Dado’s coordinator. “We will be offering more courses with the Knight Center, will create data labs inside Rio de Janeiro favelas and will run our own fellowship program”. Outstanding! We have so much more to share with you in our annual report that’s coming up in a few weeks. 2015 has been a great year for School of Data in many, many aspects and we are eager to share all those moments with you! Flattr this!

Data Roundup, 3 December

- December 3, 2013 in aids, australia, bushfire, charts, climate change, course, Data, Data Roundup, gender, inequality, infographics, javascript, Mapping, november, online, Roundup, top 5, Tutorial, tweets, World Bank

A course on online mapping, new visualization software, corruption perceptions data, bushfires in Australia through interactive maps, climate change effects infographics, the top 5 tweets of November in data visualization, a gift list for data lovers.

United Nations Photo – Climate Change Effects in Island Nation of Kiribati

Tools, Events, Courses If you are a wannabe mapper and you need to acquire skills to manage your digital exploration tools you might be interested in registering at the “Online mapping for beginner” course of CartoDB starting on December the 3rd. Hurry up: only few places left! Daniel Smilkov, Deepak Jagdish and César Hidalgo are three MIT students that developed a visualization tool called Immersion. Immersion helps you visualizing your network of e-mail contacts using only “From”, “To”, “Cc” without taking into account any kind of content. JavaScript is one of the most common programming language frequently used to create beautiful visualizations. Follow this tutorial from if you want to learn it bypassing D3.js. Practice makes perfect! Data Stories Yesterday, Transparency International launched it’s annual Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) ranking countries according to perceived levels of corruption. Have a look at the results and see how your country ranks. Everyone knows what a bar chart is but have you ever heard about trilinear plots? This post from Alberto Cairo introduces a short consideration on new forms of data representations and on when to break conventions in information design. The goal of the Digital Methods Initiative of the Amsterdam University is to map and analyze causes, effects and possible future scenarios deriving from climate change. As part of this project, the students from Density Design Research Lab wrote a wonderful post outlining their visual design take on climate change. Gender inequality is one of those big issues which varies enormously from country to country. If you are wondering what countries have the worst gender gap a look at the map published on the Slate Magazine by Jamie Zimmerman, Nicole Tosh, and Nick McClellan. There are a lot of visualizations you can make from data coming from social networks, especially from those coming from the biggest one: Facebook. Take a minute to see those posted in this curious article from Armin Grossenbacher: “Visualising (not so) Big Data”. In Australia bushfires occur frequently. Look at the amazing interactive story that The Guardian published on their history, showing maps with data on temperatures, hectares of land burnt and number of properties damaged. Not everyone knows that we just passed the World Aids Day on the first of December. Tariq Khokhar reminds us the global situation of the disease in this article from the World Bank Data Blog. Data Sources extracted the list of the 5 most influential tweets of November containing the hashtag #dataviz from a database of about 10.100 posts. Read it here and see who did best. Christimas is getting closer. If you need some good suggestions on what to buy to your friends and parents take a moment to read the FlowingData Gift Guide and you’ll find some interesting data-gifts for your data-lovers. flattr this!