Craig Hill, Senior Vice President, Survey, Computing, and Statistical Sciences, RTI International
9:00am-10:15am on Tuesday, 5/22/2018
Grand Mesa F
Orin Day, RTI International
Using "Big Data" and data science tools, techniques, and approaches to produce (or predict) estimates is often viewed as a threat to the livelihood of statisticians and survey researchers. Often, these "new" tools or approaches are viewed with suspicion, or as being rife with error. In this talk, Dr. Hill reviews what we know about big data and data science, examines several of the myths and buzzwords being promulgated about big data and data science, and provides several use cases for the audience's consideration. He will start with definitions of "big data" and "data science" and then begin to unpack these definitions. For example, he'll delve into the catchphrase, "data is new oil." What does that mean, exactly? What are the implications for statisticians, survey researchers, and others in our industry? Finally, Dr. Hill will present several scenarios (use cases) in which researchers have used data science-based approaches to social problems or issues for which we might have used a survey research-based approach in the past. Craig A. Hill Senior Vice President, Survey, Computing, and Statistical Sciences Craig A. Hill, PhD, has more than 30 years of experience in social science research, directing research projects both large and small for a wide variety of federal, academic, and commercial clients. In addition, Dr. Hill has published and presented papers related to social science methods, including topics as diverse as hospital ranking methodology, interviewer fraud, new technology for social science research, and social media in survey research. In his current role, he sets vision and strategy for the Survey, Computing, and Statistical Sciences Unit, a $150 million business unit that designs and implements projects using a variety of technological, analytical, and methodological approaches. The majority of the unit's business derives from survey-related projects in which primary data collection (through telephone and in-person interviews, medical record abstraction, clinical report forms, and self-administered paper and web questionnaires) is a main component. The fastest-growing component is the Center for Data Science, which brings new techniques, tools, and approaches to the social sciences.