‘Just Because We Can With Data, Doesn’t Mean We Should’

Data scientists should have a strong moral compass in order to handle big data, according to DJ Patil, deputy chief technology officer for data policy and chief data scientist at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. “Every data science, computer science, stats, econ, or other class-using data must have ethics as a central part of their curriculum,” Patil said during an online forum. “Just because we can with data, doesn’t mean we should.” DJ Patil (Photo: LinkedIn) Patil referenced an OSTP blog post about big data techniques that can detect bias and prevent discrimination, and how technologies can inadvertently cause or mask instances of discrimination. “This is one of the biggest things that I’m concerned about today,” Patil said. Patil; Megan Smith, U.S. chief technology officer; and…


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