The South African chapter is the first African Women in Big Data chapter to launch. Here is a summary of the activities we have contributed to in the last few weeks.
Kwena Mabotja (Sub Saharan Director, SAP NexGen), Cathy Smith (Managing Director, SAP Africa), Lesley Williams (CEO, Tshimologong Precint) and Ayanda Saki (CEO at Milestone Connexions).
March 18th – SAPNexGen hosted a WiDS event in partnership with Stanford University. WiBDSA was invited as a collaborative partner to assist in crafting the content for the event and contribute to the panel discussions. The theme, the changing face of data science, provided a backdrop upon which we could unpack what these technological advancements mean for the African continent and South African society. The audience was mostly made up of professional women in low to middle management who are interested in the Data Science field and the opportunities it presents. Click here to view a snippet video of the event.
May 4th – We celebrated #StarWarsDay with Geekulcha, a community of makers, where young, creative and ambitious tech geeks meet. The community is led by Mixo Ngoveni and Tiyani Nghonyama, who established this community in 2013. We spent the day learning about the various ways Open Data platforms can be leveraged to solve African problems.
L. to R.: Naomi Molefe (Chair of SA chapter), Palesa Naka (Chief Engineering Officer, Kulani Group), Kurisani Maswanganyi (Managing Director, Kulani Group) and Lindi Nakedi (Managing Director, Gubhani Exploration).
Dr. Paul Plantinga, from the Human Sciences Research Council, highlighted some of the exciting projects they have rolled out to monitor Air Pollution data using sensors placed on the streets of Soshanguve in Pretoria.
We learned about some of the uses cases for AI in Africa. Dr. Vukosi Marivate took us through the work that his team of researchers at the University of Pretoria are doing, including investigating how the racial and gender biases in the development of AI based tools have social implications for Africans and how we can get involved in solving this problem.
Our deputy chairperson, Keneilwe Mafatshe, was a hit with the young dev women, who expressed interest in not only joining our Global Forum Women In Big Data but their need for female mentors. Click here to view a video.
May 9th – The chair, Naomi, was invited to give a keynote at the Women in Mining South Africa event where young women, Entrepreneurs and Executive women within the South African mining industry were in attendance. WiMSA shares similar goals and mission with WiBD: to provide an empowering network that will inspire, support and develop the progression of women working in the South African mining industry. It is led by Thabile Makgala, a Mining Executive at Impala Platinum. From a digital talent point of view, Naomi shared her experience and anecdotes on the key drivers for talent demand within the mining and metals industry in the next few years.
Research shows that women are 11% better when it comes to digital skills, including search, email, social media, digital strategy, planning, mobile, and big data, yet they make up less than one-third of the digital marketing workforce. Women may be better at giving personalized content, which is in high demand by consumers and better for business. Furthermore, women are finding new ways to put their skills to the test when it comes to mobile marketing.
Targeting Both Men and Women
Studies have found that women are more likely to respond to email campaigns and engage in bargains and deals. This information is valuable for shaping future digital marketing campaigns, particularly in terms of reaching all demographics. Female engagement rates mean that it’s equally important to know how to market to men who haven’t engaged or responded to previous campaigns.
One way to do this is by using online marketing analytics to not only show you which pages are visited the most and where on that page has the most mouse clicks in the form of heat maps, but you can also see what people are searching for. Once you have this information, you need to know how to use it. For example, if you’re working on increasing how many views your videos get, you can use the information to improve your SEO. You already know the keywords people are searching for, so put them into your video names and on your social media.
It’s All About personalization
Personalized digital marketing is extremely effective, and big data is making it easier to do this than ever before. Women tend to be more skilled at giving potential consumers a personalized experience that goes further than simply putting their name in an email. When creating a new campaign, it’s possible to read into previous purchases, online activity, and how engaged people have been in the past. This information can then be used to create a truly personalized experience. Research from a Deloitte study backs this up, finding that people not only want personalized communication, but they also want products and services to be tailored to them.
Analyzing and Using Mobile Data
Americans look at their phones an average of 47 times a day, so it’s more important than ever to advertise specifically to mobile users. Advertising on mobile devices needs to be done differently as potential customers shop differently on a smaller screen and when they’re away from their desktop. Analyzing mobile user data can help to get more customers through mobile devices, as well as increase shopper conversion rates, which is one of the digital skills that women have been found to be better at. Developing technology, along with big data, has helped to make this an easier process, particularly finding and advertising to new customers. It’s important to understand how to use this data to stay on top of such trends.
As women become more accomplished in the world of digital marketing, their skills will become apparent, which should lead to them better representation and employment levels in the industry.
On March 8, 2019, Pluto7, Google Cloud, and Women in Big Data teams hosted a meaningful afternoon full of conversations around how empowering female leadership often leads to innovation in the tech space. By gathering on International Women’s Day, we celebrated our achievements in tech and discussed ways to continue making great contributions.
Rosa Elena Lorenzano, Head of ML/AI for HiTech at Pluto7
Our group of attendees heard from a panel of great female leaders including Jen Bennett – Technical Director. Office of the CTO at Google Cloud, Shanti Iyer – Chief Data Officer, VP Data & Analytics Office at Cisco, Kelsey Domme – Field Sales Representative at Google Cloud, Dipty Delsai – Head of ML/AI for Healthcare at Pluto7, Yulia Tell – Co-Founder Women in Big Data & Program Manager at Google Cloud, and our moderator, Rosa Lorenzano – Head of ML/AI for HiTech at Pluto7.
Our goal was to inspire women in tech communities to lead change in their workplaces and provide networking opportunities while celebrating Women’s International day.
Jen’s inspirational keynote was centered around the importance of empowering other women, seeking mentorship, and including men in conversations related to gender diversity in the tech industry.
Panelist talked about their life experiences and the realities of being a woman in tech. They shared ideas and recommendations for the next generation of women leaders, while providing meaningful insights from their personal and professional journeys.
Attendees were highly engaged during the Q&A session; speakers and attendees engaged in interesting discussions about salary negotiations, finding professional and personal life balance, leadership challenges, and gender inequality.
During the networking reception, relevant conversations and highlights around hiring processes, Pluto7 services, Google Cloud certifications, Google culture and other important topics were shared between the panelist, Pluto7 team, and the audience.
“Thanks for providing us the opportunity to feel inspired and empowered, the energy in the room was just incredible” – Palak Bathia, MS Business Analytics from SCU.
“This event exceed all my expectations, from the speakers and the quality of questions, to the giveaways and food variety” – Mila Putrenko, Recruitment Partner at BC Hydro.
Conversations around women empowerment and gender equality should be happening at every level, team and company.
According to different research, It will take up to 100 years to close the gender gap.
When it comes to taking risks, fail fast and forwards.
How do Women in Tech grow? A sponsor or champion (someone who believes in you and sticks their neck out for you) comes alongside you.
Jen is a Technical Director in Google Cloud’s Office of the CTO.
She is passionate about collaborating with and inspiring customers to transform their organizations through IOT, data, analytics and machine learning.
Prior to Google, Jen was the GM and VP Product Management of Manufacturing Software at GE Digital. She holds a BS in Electrical Engineering from Cornell University and an MS in BioEngineering from the University of Pittsburgh.
Shanthi Iyer is Cisco’s Chief Data Officer and VP of the Data & Analytics group within Cisco’s Operations organization.
A 23-year technology industry veteran, Shanthi started at Cisco in 1997 as an Oracle DBA. She has worked across Cisco, driving results and being disruptive in Infrastructure, Cisco Services, Commerce, Sales and Supply Chain.
She specializes in building deep, trust based relationships with customers to help them innovate, optimize and transform their companies by adopting Cloud.
Before Googler life, Kelsey worked at SAP in their HANA Cloud Platform business. She received a Bachelor’s degree in Business, Communications & Programmatic Marketing, and a Master’s of Science in Business Information and Analytics from the University of Denver.
Kelsey is an avid marathon runner, lover of Kombucha, electronic music, and Golden Doodles.
Yulia is a Program Manager for Cloud Partner Engineering (in Google Cloud), working across Google Cloud to enable high profile technology partnership through technical integrations and program management.
She joined Google after spending 10+ years at Intel, where she worked on a variety of projects such as partner engagements in the big data domain, new product development in IOT, and developer relations.
She is the co-founder of Women in Big Data initiative, and previously was the co-chair for Women@Intel Network
Women in Big Data Alberta (Edmonton) Canada Chapter
We are excited to report WiBD Alberta (Edmonton) hosted its first meetup on April 11, 2019 at Startup Edmonton. This was an opportunity to get engaged from the inception of the chapter and to help shape what it will be. The meeting was attended by a group of dynamic individuals from diverse backgrounds, all with a passion for big data and analytics…and the conversation flowed!
Dr. Diana Shaw
Dr. Diana Shaw, the WiBD Alberta Chapter Lead, provided information regarding how WiBD was conceived, its global spread and reach around the world, and the support of the sponsors, partners and members.
The attendees introduced themselves and the floor was opened for discussion about what we want our chapter to be, what its focus will be and, provisionally, how we might achieve our objectives of engaging, strengthening, mentoring and training. We decided we will aim to meet four times a year and to offer a variety of events, including presentations, panel discussions, training/education and networking opportunities. Based on the exchange of LinkedIn contact information, and to reflect our professional networking focus, we also chose to form a LinkedIn page for our chapter.
Everyone was encouraged to let their voice be heard—as evidenced by a follow-up message that the meeting “was the most interactive data science meetup I’ve ever been to and I’m looking forward to the next meeting.” While our official meeting ended, the animated conversation continued at the restaurant beneath Startup Edmonton…!
Our next meeting is planned for June, when we’re looking forward to maintaining the momentum and continuing the conversations we started in our initial meeting.
Hosted our first 2019 Women in Big Data meetup on April 12 at the Tecnopuc Technological and Scientific Park – Porto Alegre – RS – Brazil ! We are so glad that once again we’ve had full attendance, and this meant a lot to us. The agenda was prepared with our goal of Diving into Big Data always in mind.
We opened the event by clarifying for the audience the purpose and focus of the WiBD Committee. Next, Letícia Batistela, one of the Woman In Tech leaders in Brazil, delivered a talk about career transition and success. Letícia is a member of Women in IT, and some of the initiatives she spoke about included helping each other to empower the themes around how women can stand up in a professional market most occupied for men.
For our technical speech, Mine Caxeiro, one of the WiBD Latin America Leaders and CEO of N1N3 Data Science, gave us a practical talk about the concept and applicability of Big Data. The lecture included a collaborative moment in which the audience formed groups to discuss applicability and share ideas about the uses of Big Data.
We ended up sharing some hiring opportunities in this field–and the good news is that we are having a massive investment in Big Data locally, resulting in a lot of open positions!
Our next meeting is planned for late June and we expect all this amazing audience once again. This time, the challenge will be setting up a full hands-on event.
The gaming industry was projected to hit $135 billion dollars in 2018, according to the findings of GamesIndustry.biz. With massive revenues to be earned, it only made sense women leaders in the gaming sector, like Celine Holzmann of Namco Bandai, would start to pay attention to the enormous amount of information compiled and analyzed. This led big game manufacturers to embrace a mobile direction for 2019. It was clear that big data had firmly established this mobile game revolution.
Data on Old Gaming Habits
Around 211 million Americans play video games on at least one type of device, according to the study by Electronic Entertainment Design and Research. Roughly 52% of that number play their games on static platforms like personal computer rigs (PC) and consoles where a common concern of gamers is data loss. This is why, since the launch of Atari and Microsoft, most gaming companies focused on improving their hardware to better handle data. It was those platforms they relied on to provide a more enjoyable gaming experience for their players. Their belief was that PC and console gamers would continue to dictate the direction that the gaming establishments would take. As it turns out, this was far from the reality of the situation—and that’s all thanks to big data.
The Mobile Revolution
Gaming companies and software developers like Blizzard, Valve Software, and Nintendo turned to data analysis to seek the direction they should take moving forward. They use data to harvest and build data-driven improvements and designs. They also found was that the mobile gaming industry accounted for 53% of total game sales in 2018. Almost immediately, Blizzard announced they would lean toward developing mobile games. Namco Bandai’s mobile games, under the jurisdiction of Holzmann, will be launching Tales of Crestoria sometime in 2019. Kongregate, under the leadership of co-founder Emily Greer, created more mobile friendly games to suit tablets and mobile phones to facilitate access for a wider gamer base.
The Future of Big Data in Gaming Analysis
If anything, the swerve toward mobile gaming shows that big game companies are paying very close attention to the information business intelligence can yield. More gamers are using their smartphones to play a wider variety of games, and big data can now comprise app engagements, site traffic, and social media ads. Chief data officers can use their expertise to analyze data available from servers and client engagements, using it to find out what new consumer habits are arising. That way, they can better tailor their services to the growing marking needs.
Big data will continue to play a continuous part in the evolution of the gaming industry. In its present state, the data available enables gaming giants to take steps toward embracing mobile gamers and their needs. Only time will tell what other trends will arise. It is safe to assume that the watchers of big data will be right there at the helm of the trends, telling game manufacturers what direction to take.
Questions and answers on the latest training from Cisco and WiBD!
What is this great training opportunity?
Cisco Networking Academy is inviting a limited number of Women in Big Data members to high-quality, fifty-hour online training offerings on Big Data and Analytics with a focus on the Internet of Things. Members who successfully complete the courses will receive a certificate from Cisco.
Our Cisco sponsor is Ann Andersen, Corporate Social Responsibility Manager at Cisco, who learned about our community and offered to partner with us. This initiative is supported by Jutta Graefensteiner, Director Channel and Partner Management Cisco Germany. The training has been made possible thanks to Monika Stausberg, IT & Big Data Instructor from the vocational school ITECH in Hamburg, and Vanessa Verstegen-Häntsch, CEO of IT-Bildungsnetz.
How can I get more details?
Click here to view a webinar that reviews the content, explains the hands-on optional part of the training, and provides details about how to join the webinar. This can be watched online or downloaded.
What is the course content?
The Internet of Things increases the opportunity for people to create and invent new devices due to lower costs and greater access. The resulting explosion of new types of devices and solutions contributes to the exponential growth of data in the IoT. Organizations are now critically dependent on the collection, storage and analysis of data to extract information and gain insights for the business: Making good decisions depends on good data. As the amount of data grows, decision makers increasingly rely on data analytics to extract the required information at the right time and in the right place to make the best decision. Students who complete the Big Data & Analytics course will be able to perform the following functions:
Explain how businesses can extract information and insights from IoT Data.
Understand the steps of the Data Analysis Lifecycle and perform these tasks.
Understand privacy and security aspects of data.
Explain the different types of data analytics: descriptive, predictive and prescriptive.
Use Python to create a data pipeline to acquire, manipulate and visualize sensor data.
Apply exploratory data analysis to extract insights from data.
Understand how Machine Learning algorithms can be used for predictive analytics.
Present and communicate using data storytelling.
Describe the evolution of data management technologies from SQL to NoSQL.
Understand and explain the evolution of a modern data center computing platform and be aware of distributed scalable Big Data solutions such as Apache Hadoop, Cassandra and Spark.
What are the chapters of this training?
Data and the Internet of Things – Understand the concepts of Big Data & Analytics and the role of Big Data in IoT systems.
Fundamentals of Data Analysis – Learn the basics of descriptive statistics, the practical aspects in acquiring data from a sensor, and how to create visual representations of the data.
Data Analysis – Explore data using statistics and visualization to extract information and create hypotheses.
Advanced Analytics & Machine Learning – Learn about predictive analytics, supervised and unsupervised approaches to Machine Learning, and how to apply models to make predictions from data.
Storytelling with Data – Learn how to transform analytics results into a convincing narrative with clear visual communication.
Introduction to Data Center & Data Engineering – Learn the basic principles behind the most important scalable solutions for Big Data, such as Apache Hadoop and the related ecosystem of technologies.
The course content and the method for registering are explained in detail in the webinar. If you still have any questions about this partnership or the training, you can contact Nahia Orduña from Women in Big Data team or Ann Andersen from Cisco.
Women in Big Data Munich Chapter hosted an afterwork event at Globe Business College Munich. Located in Munich city center, the college offers a relationship- based model education.
WiBD Munich Team with Dr Walsh: from left to right: Pat Piritburana, Astrid Neumann, Katharina Brass, Susan Walsh, Nahia Orduna, Kendy Rannenberg
After a brief introduction fromAstrid Neumann and Nahia Orduña about Women in Big Data, Dr. Susan Walsh, Founder and Director of Globe Business College, presented her vision on developing and driving a relationship-based business in a digital world. She provided insights about the role relationship-based, niche business models play in a world where technology is becoming the paradigm. She also presented her view about the future of third-level business education of a new generation immersed in digitalisation in a world increasingly driven by technology. Susan is a great speaker and engaged the audience with the new concepts and questions she was raising. After her talk, a number of the audience followed up to learn more about Globe Business College.
Pat Piritburana introducing Shailen Sobhee
The second speaker was Shailen Sobhee, who is a AI Software Technical Consulting Engineer at Intel. Shailen specializes in the performance analysis and optimization of software. His main focus areas at Intel are AI and HPC (High Performance Computing). Shailen holds a Master’s degree in Computational Science and Engineering from the Technical University of Munich. He spoke about Brain Tumor Segmentation using deep learning, which involves a deep-learning algorithm that assists medical specialist in making decisions (and which sounds wonderful and scary at the same time!).
Shailen also explained how a deep learning algorithm helped radiologists analyze Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scans of the human brain to detect tumor areas with a reasonably high accuracy. He focused on the technical aspects of the deep learning algorithm: the image dataset, the deep-learning model, and the Intel-optimized frameworks that made the prediction successful and performant on Intel Xeon Scalable processors. It was very interesting to see the real and lifesaving applications from Big Data!
Sabina Kofler and Stefan Rothermel sharing their view on agile and advanced analytics
The last speakers were Sabina Kofler, Agile Coach and Scrum Master, and Stefan Rothermel, Head of Agile, both at Mercateo AG. They presented on how Agile methodologies meet advanced analytics, which they named a marriage in heaven. They explained how advanced analytical skills are important to organisations using Agile methodologies at two different stages: early, high level analysis can foster the formulation of hypotheses about what is important for customers; later in the process these skills help evaluate the impact of changes to the product. They also spoke about how the diversity that women bring to teams is very important for increased successful. Sabina reflected on her diverse approach as Scrum Master for Agile teams, and Stefan communicated his reasons for being an advocate of diversity. The presentation was appreciated by our members, many of whom approached the presenters afterwards with questions about careers in Agile—definitely a trending topics in our community.
After the presentations there was over an hour of networking time—in fact, it was hard to bring the event to a close, as people kept chatting until the very end.
Paris is the first WiBD EMEA chapter and the “headquarters” site of Women in Big Data Europe. Here is a summary of the activities we have hosted in the last few months, and some highlights for future plans.
Tina Rosario talking to attendees
March, 2019: WiBD held a cocktail party at Big Data Paris, an annual event that hosts Big Data and Analytics professionals under one roof, showcasing a range of enterprises, from large corporations…to mid-size established companies…to innovative startups, including many WiBD worldwide partners. This year the event attracted 16,500 attendees. The WiBD gathering took place at the SAP-Intel booth, and it was a true pleasure to see some new faces and to catch up with old friends. Tina gracefully hosted the cocktail party, at which she presented the mission and vision of the community, and the core team mingled with participants informally, answering questions about training, meetups and job matching opportunities.
February 2019: We held a traditional core team face-to-face in Paris, hosted by SAP. A number of chapter leads attended in person, while others joined via conference call. As always, it was rewarding to share ideas, synchronize on our objectives and discuss how we can continue to operate as one team as we are growing quickly across geographical and organizational boundaries.
Tina Rosario (WiBD Regional Director EMEA, SAP) and Sebastien Gibier (Director SAP Foundry Paris)
November 2018: The Paris WiBD Paris chapter held a speed mentoring event. Sebastien Gibier, Director of the SAP Foundry hosted the event and delivered welcome note along with Tina Rosario. Our panel constituted from seasoned professionals representing a range of career paths: from sales executive to a startup founder to an investor. However, such diversity resonated well with the range of professional interests that the group of attendees represented, it was an evening of high quality conversations in small groups, where people rotated and everyone had a chance to speak with each of the mentors. We received very positive feedback on the format of this event and our target is to organize a similar one later in 2019.
Coming Soon: Last but not least, our next big event is planned for VivaTech which will take place in May. Stay tuned for details and invite you to stop by to talk to us!
Registration for WiBD at VivaTech will open in a few weeks at the MeetUp site. In the meanwhile, follow EMEA events on Instagram!
As part of the International Women Week, Vodafone celebrated the 6th of March a Data Diversity day, where the London Chapter of Women in Big Data was invited to Vodafone’s London Paddington offices for an internal event in the morning and an after work external event in the evening. The morning event was joined by around 80 people in the offices and was streamed to all Vodafone employees world wide. The evening event was joined by around 80 people in the office.
Nuria Oliver, Ahmed Essam, Nahia Orduna
The fascinating morning session focused on the world of Data Analytics and AI. The event was hosted by Ahmed Essam, Group Commercial and Strategy Officer, who delivered a key note around the commitment to Diversity from Vodafone. As a Vodafone executive, he shared his view on the importance of inclusion and of bringing diverse talent and way of thinking to the company. Nahia Orduna, from Women in Big Data EMEA Core Team, served as moderator and shared interesting facts about data to encourage the conversations. Senior Manager in Analytics and Digital Integration in Vodafone, Nahia explained why a career in Data is a great opportunity no matter your gender, age or career background. In addition to giving advice to people on how to pursue a career in data, she also presented the global partnership between Vodafone and Women in Big Data and celebrated that it is now one year old!
The morning continued with Dr. Nuria Oliver, MIT PhD holder, multiple award winner, an elected permanent member of the Royal Academy of Engineering of Spain, and one of the most cited female Data Scientists in the world. Nuria shared her Data Science career journey, and also spoke on the ways Data Analytics adds commercial value to Vodafone, as well as about the work Vodafone does to improve the life quality for billions of people, making Vodafone a purpose-led organisation.
In the afternoon, there was a panel discussion on data trends, moderated by Nahia and joined by 80 people from different companies. It was very dynamic and the topics discussed were around the latest data trends, privacy and quality issues, how to communicate data to people who are not data friendly, and how big organisations are embracing the data.
The panelists were:
WendySomerville, Head of Operational Excellence at Vodafone Business. Wendy is a senior leader in Vodafone with an extensive track record delivering operational excellence and productivity in a commercially driven, fast-paced and rapidly changing global environment. She shared her experience in transforming big organisations and the key role data plays in that.
Helena Guerra, Senior Manager Big Data Technology at Vodafone UK. Helena provided insights around her experience as a key player in complex cross-functional and cross-cultural programs and the challenges of developing Big Data teams in Vodafone.
Kellie Peters, Director and Data Rockstar at Databasix UK. Kellie’s passion about data was contagious to everybody in the audience as she enlightened the audience with her views about data privacy and ethical data management.
Elspeth Finch MBE and CEO and founder of IAND, a digital platform designed to automate strategic account management with clients and suppliers. Elspeth, who was awarded an MBE for services to Engineering and Enterprise in 2017, shared her expertise in shaping the Government’s engineering policy with a focus on innovation and diversity through her work at the UK Royal Academy of Engineering and at the Institute of Engineering & Technology.
Wendy Somerville, Kellie Peters, Elspeth Finch, Helena Guerra, Nahia Orduna
Following the panel discussion, Sagree Mahilall, who kicked off the Women in Big Data UK Chapter in 2018 and has been leading UK wide events since then, organised a competition for the end of the panel discussion. The prizes were 60 minutes coaching sessions which will be delivered by Stephanie Twineham, Global Human Resources Business Partner at Vodafone Business and Wendy Somerville and Nahia Orduna from the panel and also part of Vodafone Business Team.
Ioana Margareta Ion, Regional Partner Manager at MAPR and Women in Big Data London Chapter lead, and Yasuara Noval, Solution Architect at Vodafone and member of the Women in Big Data UK Chapter, organised the event and led a great team of Vodafone volunteers: Helen Adesina, Scot Fyde, Elia Diaz Vazquez, Merwa Jassim, Elen Shaw and Sumana Rehmatullah.
Women in Big Data wants to thank the organisation team from Vodafone who made it possible to celebrate a Data Diversity day, specially toElena Fatisi, Group Diversity & Inclusion Manager, George Filtsos, Human Resources Business Partner and Oscar Machado, Digital Recruitment Manager.
And thanks to all who attended. It was a long day, full of inspiration!