While there is a lot of buzz about big data also in the world of international development and humanitarian responses, this post would like to remind that non-big data still matters for us as development practitioners – not because of technological deficiencies but because big data risks condemning humans to passivity.
Big Data for development has undeniably delivered great advances and will continue to do so. Still, it is only as good as the people who create it and as the people who use it. And, as technology continues to develop, much is still unknown.
Where are TED talks on Big Data placed in the grey zone between global social movements and global capitalism? I take a look at four TED talks on big data to see where they fit in.
Information generation, storage capacity and data sharing has been made easier and cheaper now than ever before thanks to leaps of technological advances. Our daily interaction with the internet on various platforms plus mobile phones has enabled creation of huge amounts of data where estimates have that 90% of the …
To address gaps in data gathering and generation in the digital age, the origins of datafication might provide an evergreen reminder that not all data is digital and that referring back to analog data might be key to addressing older, systemic problems.
Gone are the days when the utility of phones was to make phone calls. Mobile phones for development have endless potential surpassing that of the desktop computer. Their value is primarily in data-gathering and knowledge-sharing, but not without a fair share of associated risks.
It may be hard to imagine that midst hooting buses and matatus*, touts haggling with potential commuters and small cafes bustling with throngs of people would be the same space shared by many others who quietly and seemingly undisturbed look down on their mobile phones busy surfing the internet. This …
Big data has been hailed as a powerful resource to inform and advance sustainable development. But what type of big data are we talking about? How are we making sense of it? And how do we ensure that we’re not losing the individual to a wealth of numbers?