SCC Lab Director and Human Centered Design & Engineering (HCDE) Professor Cecilia Aragon is co-PI of a recently awarded $37.8 million collaborative initiative for data science research that was received from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. The University of Washington, the University of California, Berkeley, and New York University are partners in the five-year initiative that was announced Tuesday at a White House Office of Science and Technology Policy event.
Dr. Aragon’s research focuses on computer-supported cooperative work, visual analytics, and creativity for scientific collaborations, including the socio-technical aspects of cyberinfrastructure. The award will support her further work in understanding relationships and collaborations between data science and science using an ethnographic approach. “It is critical to understand the culture of data science as a socio-technical system and not as a purely technical problem of developing better algorithms to process huge volumes of data, although those are needed as well. In the end, human insight will be required to make sense out of exponentially greater quantities of complex data,” said Aragon. The UW team, which is made up of faculty from across campus, is led by Ed Lazowska, Bill & Melinda Gates Chair in Computer Science & Engineering and Director of the UW eScience Institute. UC Berkeley’s team is led by Nobel laureate astrophysicist Saul Perlmutter, and NYU’s by neuroscientist and computer scientist Yann LeCun.
Further information on the initiative and award recipients can be found at the eScience Institute blog.