Data Science for Social Good
Philanthropy and Social Impact in a Complex World
This book is a collection of insights by thought leaders at first-mover organizations in the emerging field of “Data Science for Social Good”. It examines the application of knowledge from computer science, complex systems, and computational social science to challenges such as humanitarian response, public health, and sustainable development. The book provides an overview of scientific approaches to social impact – identifying a social need, targeting an intervention, measuring impact – and the complementary perspective of funders and philanthropies pushing forward this new sector.
Editors & Authors
Secretary General at Fondazione CRT - CEO OGR Torino
Massimo Lapucci is Secretary General of Fondazione CRT, Italy's third largest foundation of banking origin in terms of assets. He holds the same position for Fondazione Sviluppo e Crescita CRT, focused on impact investing, tech and innovation. Lapucci is also Managing Director at OGR company, a large former industrial building in the heart of Turin converted into an innovative international centre for experimentation in contemporary culture, the arts, research and start-ups in partnership with globally renowned accelerators.
Former President of EFC-European Foundation Centre, the institutional philanthropy network that brings together over 300 organisations from around 40 countries including the United States, Lapucci is Vice President of Social Impact Agenda for Italy and a member of the Global Social Impact Investment Steering Group.
He has extensive international experience on the boards of public and private companies in multiple sectors and in non-profit organisations in Europe and America, including Rockefeller P.A. Europe, the London School of Economics-Marshall Institute, ISI Foundation for Big Data in Turin and ISI Global in New York. President of Treccani Futura, the new edtech centre in Italy, he has been a World Fellow at Yale University (USA) since 2006.
Associate Professor at the University of Turin, and Research Area Coordinator at ISI Foundation
Ciro Cattuto, PhD is an Associate Professor in the Computer Science Department of the University of Turin (Turin, Italy) and a Principal Researcher and Research Area Coordinator at ISI Foundation (Turin, Italy). His interests include data science, complex systems, public health, and the social impact of data. He holds a PhD in Physics from the University of Perugia, Italy and has carried out interdisciplinary research at the University of Michigan, USA, at the Enrico Fermi Center and Sapienza University in Rome, and at the Frontier Research System of RIKEN, Japan.
He is a founder and principal investigator of the SocioPatterns collaboration, an international effort on studying social networks with wearable sensors, with applications to epidemiology. He is an editorial board member of Nature Scientific Data, EPJ Data Science, PeerJ Computer Science, Journal of Computational Social Science, Data & Policy journals. He was an organizer and chair of leading conferences in Computer Science, Data Science, Network Science and Complex Systems. He is a Fellow of the European Laboratory for Learning and Intelligent Systems (ELLIS), a Steering Committee Member of CRT Foundation, and a member of the Italian Ministry of Labor's working group on Algorithmic Governance. He has served as an expert in the COVID-19 task force of the Italian Ministry for Technological Innovation and Digital Transition.
Jean Monnet Professor of European Union Law at HEC Paris
Alberto Alemanno is the Jean Monnet Professor of European Union Law at HEC Paris. Alberto’s research has been centered on how the law may be used to improve people’s lives, in particular through the adoption of power-shifting reforms countering social, health, economic, and political disparities of access within society. Alberto is also permanent visiting professor at the College of Europe in Bruges and at the University of Tokyo School of Public Policy as well as scholar at The Rutgers Institute for Corporate Social Innovation at Rutgers University.
Due to his commitment to bridge the gap between academic research and policy action, Alberto has pioneered innovative forms of academic and civic engagement and activism in the EU transnational space via his civic start up The Good Lobby. Its mission is to equalize access to power by strengthening the advocacy capacity of civil society and making corporate political influence more accountable and sustainable. Alberto has been involved in dozens of campaigns, ranging from the first European Citizen Initiative putting an end to international roaming to the drafting of the EU whistleblower directive, a decade-old campaign for EU transnational lists and the recently launched ‘Voters without Borders’ asking for full political rights for EU citizens regardless of where they live across the continent. He sits on the board of several civil society organisations, such as European Alternatives, VoxEurop, Friends of Europe, Access Info Europe, as well as the citizens’ campaigning movement We Move, which operates transnationally.
His latest book, ‘Lobbying for Change: Find Your Voice to Create a Better Society’ provides a novel, well-timed analysis and guide to levelling the democratic playing field by empowering ordinary citizens to speak up and inform policy decisions at local, national and international level.
Alberto is a regular contributor to Le Monde, The Guardian, Bloomberg, Politico Europe, Forbes, and Il Sole 24 Ore, and his scholarly and public interest work has been featured in The Economist, The New York Times, the Financial Times, Libération as well Science and Nature.
The World Economic Forum nominated him Young Global Leader in 2015, and was elected Ashoka fellow in 2019.
Originally from Italy, Alberto is a graduate of Harvard Law School, the College of Europe and holds a PhD in International Law & Economics from Bocconi University.
CEO, Fondation Botnar
Stefan Germann is the CEO of Fondation Botnar, Fondation Botnar is a Swiss-based foundation which champions the use of AI and digital technology to improve the health and wellbeing of children and young people in growing urban environments. To achieve this, the foundation supports research, catalyses diverse partners, and invests in scalable solutions around the world. Read more: www.fondationbotnar.org
Stefan was previously Executive Director onegoalglobal.org (an innovative collaborative child nutrition and healthy lifestyle campaign), and Senior Director of World Vision International Sustainable Health Partnership, Innovation and Accountability unit based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. World Vision operates currently in almost 100 countries.
He worked for over 25 years in Africa and Asia in various health leadership roles with different agencies in the area of child health-related development, relief and advocacy work. His worked included managing a large hospital in Zimbabwe.
In 2005 he started to work with World Vision International’s emergency relief team as the director for the integrated technical sector teams in the Asia Tsunami response. This was a complex relief & reconstruction program where he was based in Asia. This program included major health components, including primary health care rehabilitation in Sri Lanka and mHealth projects for midwives in Aceh, Indonesia.
He has previously held several board and advisory board memberships, including: Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (PMNCH), UBS Optimus Foundation, REPSSI in Africa, and on the Advisory Board of the Global Health Program, The Graduate Institute – Geneva focusing on the role of NGOs in global health diplomacy.
He holds a degree in micro-engineering, an MSc degree in Social Policy & NGO Management, and a doctoral degree in Development Studies focusing on child wellbeing in the urban African context. Stefan finished in 2015 an Executive Master’s program in Tri Sector Collaboration at Singapore Management University.
Ursula Jasper links:
Ursula Jasper LinkedIn
Senior Programme Manager – Digital Innovations at United Nations Global Pulse
Dr. Paula Hidalgo-Sanchis works as Senior Programme Manager – Digital Innovations at United Nations Global Pulse. She worked over 20 years integrating innovation into humanitarian and development practice in Africa, Asia, Latin America and The Caribbean. With working experience as Manager of Innovations, Social Policy Advisor and Analyst with the UN and a private Foundation, she is passionate about promoting
the responsible use of Artificial Intelligence and other frontier technologies for sustainable development, humanitarian action and peace. She holds a PhD in Geography and Master’s level on International Assistance.
Vice President of Data and Society, Patrick J. McGovern Foundation
Claudia Juech is Vice President of Data and Society at Patrick J. McGovern Foundation. Claudia is a forward-looking strategist, pragmatic optimist, and a builder of programs and organizations. Her career has been all about using data for decision making – first in the financial sector in Germany and more recently at the Rockefeller Foundation. Before she joined PJMF, Claudia established and led the Cloudera Foundation in Silicon Valley as its founding CEO.
Based on conversations with 300 nonprofit organizations, she pioneered a foundation model designed to deliver the key elements nonprofits need to use data effectively: appropriate funding in combination with direct access to technology, data expertise, and long-term technical support.
Her work is guided by a clear focus on AI- and data-use cases where the resulting insights will advance action and lead to progress on societal impact – from gender violence to child mortality. She believes that for civil society and nonprofit organizations to be successful they can’t pass on the opportunities new data tools have to offer. Today she leads a team of technologists working collaboratively to advance the AI and data capacity and technical expertise of social change organizations. Claudia has a degree in information science from Cologne University of Applied Sciences and an International MBA from the University of Cologne. Additionally, here are a few web links:
Cofounder and Director of the ELLIS Unit Alicante Foundation, called “The Institute for Humanity-centric AI”
Nuria Oliver is Cofounder and Vicepresident of ELLIS (The European Laboratory for Learning and Intelligent Systems), cofounder and Scientific Director of the ELLIS Unit Alicante, Chief Data Scientist at Data-Pop Alliance and Chief Scientific Advisor to the Vodafone Institute. Nuria earned her PhD from MIT. She is a Fellow of the ACM, IEEE and EurAI. She is the youngest member (and fourth female) in the Spanish Royal Academy of Engineering.
She has over 25 years of research experience in human-centric AI and is the author of over 180 widely cited scientific articles as well as an inventor of 40+ patents and a public speaker. Her work is regularly featured in the media and has received numerous recognitions, including the Spanish National Computer Science Award, the MIT TR100 (today TR35), Young Innovator Award (first Spanish scientist to receive this award); 2020 Data Scientist of the Year by ESRI, the 2021 King Jaume I award in New Technologies and the 2021 Abie Technology Leadership Award.
In March of 2020, she was appointed Commissioner to the President of the Valencian Government on AI Strategy and Data Science against COVID-19. In that role, she has recently co-led ValenciaIA4COVID, the winning team of the 500k XPRIZE Pandemic Response Challenge. Their work was featured in WIRED, among other media and has received best paper award (data science category) in ECML-PKDD 2021.
Independent consultant and former CEO of 360Giving
Rachel Rank is a consultant, advising organisations on data, insights and governance projects. Previously she was the founding Chief Executive of 360Giving, and Deputy Director of Publish What You Fund, leading the organisation’s research and monitoring work including the development of an annual transparency index.
Rachel has researched and written several publications on transparency, good governance and accountability. Examples are available via LinkedIn. She is a trustee of the civic tech organisation mySociety and tweets via @rachelerank
Stefaan G. Verhulst
Co-Founder Governance Laboratory at New York University
Stefaan G. Verhulst is Co-Founder of the Governance Laboratory (The GovLab) at New York University (NYU), an action research center focused on improving decision making using advances in science and technology - including data and collective intelligence. He is also, among other positions and affiliations, the Editor-in-Chief of Data & Policy, an open-access journal by Cambridge University Press; the Research Director of the MacArthur Research Network on Opening Governance; Chair of the Data for Children Collaborative with Unicef; a member of the High-Level Expert Group to the European Commission on Business-to-Government Data Sharing; and of the Expert Group to Eurostat on using private sector data for official statistics.
In 2018 he was recognized as one of the 10 Most Influential Academics in Digital Government globally (as part of the Top 100 in Digital Government) by the global policy platform Apolitical. Before joining NYU full time, Verhulst spent more than a decade as Chief of Research for the Markle Foundation, where he continues to serve as Senior Advisor. Previously at Oxford University, he was the UNESCO Chairholder in Communications Law and Policy and co-founded and was the Head of the Program in Comparative Media Law and Policy at the Center for Socio-Legal Studies. He was the Socio-Legal Fellow at Wolfson College, and is still an emeritus fellow at Oxford. He also taught for several years at the London School of Economics and was Founder and Co-Director of the International Media and Info-Comms Policy and Law Studies (IMPS) at the University of Glasgow School of Law.
He has published widely - including seven books- and his writings and work have appeared in the Harvard Business Review, Stanford Social Innovation Review, Project Syndicate, Wall Street Journal, The Conversation, and Open Democracy (among others). He is asked regularly to present at international conferences including TED, Collision, and the UN World Data Forum. Numerous organizations have sought his counsel - including the WorldBank; IDB, USAID, DFID, IDRC, AFP, the European Commission, Council of Europe, the World Economic Forum, UNICEF, OECD, Un-OCHA, UNDP, and several other international and national bodies.