All posts by Brendan Buff

Job Board September 2016

Welcome to the monthly APDU Job Board. Members are invited to submit job postings at their organization; the Board also includes a collection of public data-related positions (research, projections, etc.) from a variety of Federal, nonprofit, and private sources. You can submit your job postings to info@apdu.org.

APDU Conference: Data Viz Awards Winners Announced

The 2016 APDU Data Viz Awards winners have been selected by the APDU nominating committee!

The Association of Public Data Users proudly present a selection of 2016’s top visualizations using publicly available data. Submissions were received from across the country, from researchers and students to public-agency and private-sector staff. Visualizations were developed using various tools, but with a common purpose: to use public data to convey meaningful information in a compelling manner. Award recipients will present on their research questions, data sources, and design tactics. Join us for a more informal session to close our conference.

We would like to congratulate the following individuals/organizations:

Federal Public Agencies

Private Firms

Researchers and Students

State/Local Public Agencies

Attendees of the 2016 APDU Annual Conference will be able to learn more about the development of these data visualizations in the closing session of the conference on September 14 at 2:45 P.M. Register today!

APDU Conference: Building Demand for Open Data

by Cliff Cook, APDU Board Member and Planning Information Manager, City of Cambridge, Massaschusetts

Recent years have seen an explosion in the interest in open data at all levels of government.  Open data can serve as a game changer when comes to the relationship between the public, the business community and government.  A variety of actors can pose and readily answer questions that, at best, previously required a deep dive into paper files or unstructured electronic documents.

This ideal picture of open data both ignores some realities and raises questions.  Creating and maintaining open data can prove a challenge for agencies without sufficient staffing or a culture of openness.  Structuring data in a manner that is useful to actors outside the agency can take a significant amount of staff time.  Updating open data sets is not always as easy as a ”click of the button”.  The data made available are often the “low hanging fruit” and may or may not match up with demand.

What strategies do governments use to match open data they are able and willing to supply with demand from the public, from the business sector and from hacktivists? What steps can governments proactively take to match the supply of data provided with user demand?  How do we maintain interest to ensure that we can support the civic infrastructure needed to sustain open data efforts over the long haul?

The 2016 APDU conference will be visiting these questions during the session on “Building Demand for Open Data”.  Panelists will include Anthony Curio from Summit Consulting, a firm with deep experience in federal data topics, Stefaan Verhulst from the GovLab at New York University, author of the recent report on Open Data Impact, and Rebecca Williams from the Johns Hopkins University Center for Government Excellence, who works with cities across the US to more promote the use of data.  The panel will be moderated by Cliff Cook, a planner with the City of Cambridge, Massachusetts and a member of the community’s Open Data Review Board.

Job Board August 2016

Welcome to the monthly APDU Job Board. Members are invited to submit job postings at their organization; the Board also includes a collection of public data-related positions (research, projections, etc.) from a variety of Federal, nonprofit, and private sources. You can submit your job postings to info@apdu.org.

APDU Conference Session: Data’s Essential Role in Effective Journalism

By Elizabeth Nash, Vice President of Data and Product Development, PolicyMap

Our team at PolicyMap works with the latest publicly available data on a daily basis. We’re also avid consumers of the news media, staying abreast of trending topics and all things public policy-related. Given the nexus of publicly available data and current events, I’ve often wondered how journalists, bloggers and those contributing meaningful news bytes to social media outlets obtain and work with meaningful data to craft their stories. News that we follow from outlets such as the New York Times, Slate, National Public Radio and our favorite policy wonks are rife with information about statistical changes over time and disparities across geographies.

We can quickly recognize the sources of the public and proprietary data that many journalists use, but I was curious to find out more about the connection between publicly available data and the news stories we’re ingesting. How do data journalists learn about what specific data is available for their stories, given the dizzying array of public data now available, thanks to the Open Data movement? And, as professionals with skills specific to weaving stories, how do they translate gigabytes of data into comprehensible and compelling narratives? I also wanted to learn about the differences, if any, among the use of publicly available data by media outlet type. That is, how traditional journalists, bloggers and professional social media reporters use publicly available data in different ways from each other across the journalism discipline.

To that end, I contacted Mark Horvit of the Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE), who helped me to understand the profession of the data journalist. He referred me to a number of experts who could help illuminate the fascinating task of turning years’ worth of spreadsheets into carefully crafted stories. Data journalists rely on data analysis, rather than expert opinion. As an APDU Board Member, I was particularly interested in hearing about their processes and in exposing APDU members to their ways of thinking about publicly available data.

I’m proud to say that our panel, Data’s Essential Role in Effective Journalism, moderated by APDU Board Member Cliff Cook and me includes the following distinguished speakers:

  • Ben Casselman, Senior Editor and Chief Economics Writer, FiveThirtyEight.com
  • D’Vera Cohn, Senior Writer and Editor, Pew Research Center
  • Sarah Cohen, Reporter, New York Times

I hope you’ll join us for this fascinating discussion about the role of data in the work of journalists who shape our daily lives with their stories relying on publicly available data.

Show off your data wares! Support the dialogue about innovation in public data

Join the conversation about innovative data products at the 2016 APDU Annual Conference in September.

Join as a sponsor or exhibitor.  We have a great group of sponsors and exhibitors already, but we would like you to join us.  Show off your new data product, your new web interface, or your new approach to mashing up survey, administrative, and big data.

APDU is where the leaders of federal statistical agencies meet data users and brainstorm the future of public data.  If you are an innovator and want to continue being one, you need to be at the conference.  Conference sponsors and exhibitors connect directly with federal statistical agency executives, data-driven policymakers and researchers from universities, think tanks, consulting businesses, and more.

Choose to sponsor or exhibit and get your organization and/or your produced featured prominently in displays at the Conference, displays on conference promotions, free conference registration, APDU membership, and speaking engagements at the conference and companion webinars. Click here for more information.

This year’s APDU Annual Conference sponsors include:

CensusLogo-white

 

 

 

The Census Bureau’s mission is to serve as the leading source of quality data about the nation’s people and economy. They honor privacy, protect confidentiality, share our expertise globally, and conduct their work openly.

They are guided on this mission by scientific objectivity, a strong and capable workforce, devotion to research-based innovation, and an abiding commitment to our customers.

ljaf_final_color

The Laura and John Arnold Foundation’s core objective is to address the nation’s most pressing and persistent challenges using evidence-based, multi-disciplinary approaches. They strive to create functional solutions that target the root causes, not just the symptoms, of these problems. The solutions must be both scalable nationally and sustainable without permanent philanthropy.

summitlogo

Summit Consulting, LLC is a specialized analytics advisory firm that guides Federal agencies, financial institutions, and litigators as they decode their most complex analytical challenges. Summit’s staff of Economists, Econometricians, and Research Scientists use quantitative techniques to assist our clients as they model risk, evaluate program performance, and predict future performance.

infogroup

Infogroup are a big data, analytics and marketing services provider that delivers best in class data-driven customer-centric technology solutions. Our data and software-as-a-service (DaaS & SaaS) offerings help clients of all sizes, from small companies to FORTUNE 100TM enterprises, increase their sales and customer loyalty. Infogroup provides both digital and traditional marketing channel expertise that is enhanced by access to our proprietary data on 245MM individuals and 25MM businesses, which is distributed real-time to our clients.

The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) promotes a better understanding of the U.S. economy by providing the most timely, relevant, and accurate economic accounts data in an objective and cost-effective manner.

 

 

 

The mission of USDA’s Economic Research Service is to anticipate trends and emerging issues in agriculture, food, the environment, and rural America and to conduct high-quality, objective economic research to inform and enhance public and private decision making.

ERS shapes its research program and products to serve those who routinely make or influence public policy and program decisions. Key clientele include White House and USDA policy officials; the U.S. Congress; program administrators/managers; other Federal agencies; State and local government officials; and organizations, including farm and industry groups interested in public policy issues.

Job Board July 2016

Welcome to the monthly APDU Job Board. Members are invited to submit job postings at their organization; the Board also includes a collection of public data-related positions (research, projections, etc.) from a variety of Federal, nonprofit, and private sources. You can submit your job postings to info@apdu.org.

 

Job Board June 2016

Welcome to the monthly APDU Job Board. Members are invited to submit job postings at their organization; the Board also includes a collection of public data-related positions (research, projections, etc.) from a variety of Federal, nonprofit, and private sources. You can submit your job postings to info@apdu.org.

Job Board May 2016

Welcome to the monthly APDU Job Board. Members are invited to submit job postings at their organization; the Board also includes a collection of public data-related positions (research, projections, etc.) from a variety of Federal, nonprofit, and private sources. You can submit your job postings to info@apdu.org.

Call for Presenters: 2016 Consumer Expenditure Survey Microdata Users’ Workshop (July 13-15, Washington, DC)

Have you used the Consumer Expenditure Survey (CE) in your work? More specifically, have you used the public-use microdata files from the CE in research you have conducted? If so, the Bureau of Labor Statistics would like to invite you to present your work at the upcoming CE Microdata Users’ Workshop, to be held July 13-15, 2016, following the CE Survey Methods Symposium on July 12.
BLS is seeking presentations of up to 30 minutes by users of the CE data for the workshop. There are no limits to the areas of research or degree of sophistication of the papers we seek. They can be descriptive or applied. They can present simple hypothesis testing or elegant model building. Work in progress is as welcome as finished research. However, when preparing the presentation, please note that the emphasis should be on how the data were used, questions or problems encountered, and similar discussion. Results of the research are an important, and perhaps necessary, component of these presentations; nevertheless, the emphasis sought is on application.

While BLS cannot offer any honoraria to presenters, the workshop is free of charge to all who come. Past workshops have averaged about 50 attendees, so you can anticipate a significant audience for your presentation. In addition, previous workshop attendees have cited these sessions consistently among their favorites, especially the presentations giving practical examples of how the data can be used in research.

If you would like to present at the workshop, please answer the questions below, and email the proposal to review team (CE_Symposium_Workshop_2016@bls.gov).

If you have a colleague who might be interested in presenting, please forward this invitation. Also please note that the workshop is an excellent forum for graduate students to gain experience presenting their work, and to get helpful comments on research in development, including dissertation proposals or theses in progress.

If you would like to be part of the 2016 CE Microdata Users’ Workshop program or have any questions about the workshop, please contact BLS by May 1, 2016.

PRESENTATION SUBMISSION FORM: 2016 Consumer Expenditure Survey Microdata Users’ Workshop
1. Name(s)/affiliation(s) of presenter(s)
2. Title of presentation
3. Purpose of research (e.g., article for publication; class project; thesis/dissertation; work project; policy-making; etc.)
4. Brief description (one paragraph) of the work (goal of work, methods used, etc.)
5. Data used, Interview Survey, Diary Survey or both
6. Quarters/years examined (e.g., 2010Q1-2011Q1).
7. Data files used: (FMLY, MEMB, EXPN—name all that are appropriate from each survey, if both used).
8. Presentation Availability (are there dates/times you CANNOT attend/prefer?)
OPTIONAL INFORMATION:
This section is designed both to help us better understand your research, and to provide guidance/suggestions at the workshop. However, consideration of your application will not be adversely affected if none of these items apply.

Problems encountered/solutions used (if any):
Questions/concerns/comments you have for the data/workshop producers:
Suggestions to improve the microdata and documentation: