Data-Pop Alliance – ECLAC Training Course on Big Data and Digital Economy, in São Paulo September 27-29

Foto: Ricardo Matsukawa

In partnership with the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) and, Data-Pop Alliance ran a 3-day training workshop from September 27-29, 2017 on “Big Data for Measuring the Digital Economy” in São Paulo. Focused on Big Data and the digital economy in the LAC region, targeting UN and governmental staff, this program was launched in Santiago de Chile (March 2016), in collaboration with ECLAC. It is part of a comprehensive program to respond to major ‘Big Data literacy’ and data science needs and gaps of development and policy professionals around the globe.

The workshop, opened by Alexandre Barbosa ( and Sebastián Rovira (UNECLAC), brought together 40 participants from Brazilian ministries, municipalities, and well as national statistical offices and other government bodies, private sector, civil society organizations, and academia.

Photo: Ricardo Matsukawa

Day 1 started with a keynote from Wilson Peres (Senior Economic Affairs Officer, UNECLAC) discussing the challenges and opportunities in Latin America in the context of the most recent technological breakthroughs, and followed by our director Emmanuel Letouzé’s keynote “Policies, Societies, and Literacy in the Age of Big Data: Building capacities to foster social change” and two panels focusing on Brazil’s Big Data ecosystem and Digital Economy Experiences. The panels gathered representatives from the public sector (Miriam Wimmer, MCTIC; Denise Britz do N. Silva, ENCE/IBGE; Daniela Swiatek, Mobilab; Fernando Nogueira, Prefeitura de São Paulo), the private sector (Paschoal D’Auria, IBM Brasil), civil society (Natalia Mazotte, Escola de Dados; Silvio Meira, Porto Digital) and academia (Eduardo de Rezende Francisco, FGV; Karin Breitman, Association for Computing Machinery; Wagner Meira Jr., UFMG).

On Day 2 we took a deep dive into the use of Big Data methods and tools, with exciting presentations from Thiago Cardoso (Hekima) and Andrés Clavijo (Data-Pop Alliance) and a 4 hours hands-on Technical Tutorial conducted by Rodrigo Lara-Molina and Andrés Clavijo (Data-Pop Alliance).

Finally, Day 3 started with an introductory video on “Social Physics” by Data-Pop’s academic director Alex ‘Sandy’ Pentland (MIT, Data-Pop Alliance) and was followed by a panel on Legal Frameworks for Ethical Data Use bringing together brazilian experts Thiago Tavares (, Bruno R. Bioni ( Dept.) and Danilo Doneda (UERJ). This last afternoon featured an engaging  presentation on Data Ethics, by Carolina Bigonha (Hekima).

“Project Lab” group activities: during the 3 days, participants explored the stages and issues around building a ‘data-driven project’
Foto: Rogério Lorenzoni

Our next edition entitled “Big Data, Digital Economy and Sustainable Development” will be held in Mexico City next October 17-19, and co-organized with ECLAC, CEDN, the Coordination of the National Digital Strategy, from the Mexican Federal Government.  More information about this upcoming edition is available here (in Spanish)!


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