ABW Conference 2023

We are delighted to invite you to our upcoming conference on the impact of Analytics for a Better World (ABW), and to celebrate our upcoming 1 year anniversary. You’re more than welcome to join us on 24 May 2023 for an inspiring and insightful event that will be held both onsite in Amsterdam and virtually.

Our conference will bring together a group of inspiring speakers and panelist from our main stakeholders: nonprofits, researchers, and companies. Throughout the day, we will share our impact and progress with Analytics for a Better World and our plans for the coming years. We will also discuss the analytics impact projects that we and our network executed, along with the impact from the ABW Academy’s fellowship that attracted many nonprofits from all over the world. Additionally, we will introduce our new sponsors and partners who contribute to ABW.

Here is the final schedule of the day. Please note that all times follow the Central European Time (CET).

12:30 Walk-in with coffee at the Amsterdam Business School

13:00 Opening by Marc Salomon (Dean of the Amsterdam Business School and founder of ABW)

13:15 Analytics for a Better World 2022 impact and outlook by Robert Monné (ABW Managing Director), Dick den Hertog (Science to Impact director) and Parvathy Krishnan (CTO)

In this talk we will share about the progress and impact we made since our launch on 1 June 2022. We will share our stories and successes on our main activities:

  • Analytics impact projects together with our nonprofit partners and collaborators like Amref, 510, World Bank and The Ocean Cleanup
  • Knowledge sharing through our fellowship for data science practitioners with 40+ global participants.
  • Research projects and activities like our seminar series and journal

This wouldn’t have been possible without our (new) sponsors and partners. Hence, we will share how our network of contributors is developing, and how you can start contributing and/or benefiting. We will also announce a few new initiatives that we have planned for the coming months and years! 

14:00 Keynotes from our nonprofit partners on the impact of analytics

Arjen Tjallema (Head of Technology The Ocean Cleanup) – Efficiently removing plastic debris from the oceans by applying analytics  

The Ocean Cleanup is a Dutch non-profit organisation which aims to rid the world’s oceans of plastic debris. There is a large amount of plastics floating in the oceans, mostly concentrated in five “gyres”. These plastics harm marine life in the oceans, us humans through the food chain, and cause large economic damages too. Because the plastic is persistent, the damage is repeatedly done for decades or even longer. The Ocean Cleanup develops and deploys advanced technology to resolve this problem, and remove 90% of the floating plastics by 2040. Currently their “System 002”, aka Jenny, is in operation in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch between Hawaii and California, and has removed over 200,000 kg of plastic debris so far. In his keynote Arjen Tjallema will share the mission and approach of The Ocean Cleanup, and how analytics can play a role to support their mission.

Wessel de Jong (Data Scientist at 510 Netherlands Red Cross) – Applying AI for Automated Damage Assessment after disasters

510’s goal is to shape the future of humanitarian aid by converting data into understanding, put it in the hands of aid workers, decision-makers and people affected, so that they can better prepare for and cope with disasters and crises. Their purpose is to improve speed, quality & cost-effectiveness of humanitarian aid by using & creating data & digital products. Jacopo will present how 510 uses AI models to automatically assess damage to buildings from satellite images, after a disaster occurred. He’ll share the use case, technology employed, challenges, and next steps.

15:00 Parallel panel and presentations #1

Session 1a: Open-source toolkit for improving geospatial accessibility of critical infrastructure. With Kitawa Wemo (AMREF), Helena Ramalhinho Lourenço (Universitat Pompeu Fabra), Lutz Venhofen (DHL), Marije Jochemsen (510), Kai Kaiser (The World Bank), Mayukh Ghosh (University of Amsterdam) and Britt van Veggel (University of Amsterdam) – chaired by Parvathy Krishnan and Dick den Hertog

The Public Infrastructure Service Access (PISA) Toolkit has been designed to help organizations optimize the placement of crucial public sector infrastructures like health clinics, specialty healthcare centers, schools, and roads. However, the development and implementation of this tool requires both short-term and long-term research, as well as support from industry partners for scalability and platform development. To ensure that this tool is utilized effectively, we believe that collaborating closely with non-profit and development sector organizations will enable us to identify and implement impactful solutions. To discuss this topic, we have assembled a panel of speakers from non-profits, researchers, and our industry partners who are all contributing to the design, development, and deployment of this digital public good and its application in decision-making.

Session 1b: Creating impact at nonprofits with professional analytics support. With Boy Raaijmakers from ORTEC and Bouke Ottow from 510. – chaired by Robert Monné

Analytics professionals can play a vital role in making impact with analytics at non-profit organizations to jointly contribute to the SDGs. In this session we invite speakers and panelists from our nonprofit and company network, to share their stories about their collaboration, lessons learned and (mutual) added value. We’re aiming for a fruitful discussion with deep dives on for example professionalizing cloud infrastructure and architecture, cloud costs optimization, deploying complex analytics software to resource constrained environments, building organizational analytics maturity and other inspiring stories of impact.

16:00 Parallel panel and presentations #2

Session 2a: “From Science to Impact”: Creating impact at nonprofits with analytics research. With Prof. Dr. Ir. Hein Fleuren, from Zero Hunger Lab and Tilburg University, Prof. Dimitris Bertsimas from MIT and Prof. Luk Van Wassenhove from INSEAD – chaired by Dick den Hertog

Analytics can significantly contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals. However, many analytics researchers struggle in achieving real practical impact. Using real-life examples from the Zero Hunger Lab, Prof. Fleuren will discuss key factors for successful practical application.

After Hein’s presentation, Prof. Dimitris Bertsimas (MIT) and Prof. Luk Van Wassenhove (INSEAD) will give a short reflection on the presentation. After that, all three researchers will participate in a panel discussion on this topic.

Session 2b: Closing the skills gap by educating data science practitioners at nonprofits. With Dr. Claudia Orellana Rodriguez (ABW) Dana Kathleen Redeña (KadaKareer), Cynthia Muyunda (Development Alternatives Incorporated), Joanne Jan (DataDotOrg), Jaswinder Singh (Protsahan Foundation India) and Marc Snel (CMotions)– chaired by Parvathy Krishnan

The Analytics for a Better World (ABW) Academy provides strategic and tailored courses for Analytics Practitioners and Data and Digital Leaders within non-profit organizations. We kickstarted the academy last year with the Data Science Fellowship program with a goal to equip participants with the right tools and techniques to implement data-driven solutions and make data-informed decisions within their organizations. The fellowship also included hands-on mentoring in project scoping and implementation, helping participants bring their ideas to execution. In this panel discussion, we will be focusing on the impact, challenges, and success stories from last year’s Analytics for a Better World (ABW) Academy. We will hear from participants who have completed the program and how it has helped them in their roles as Data Science Practitioners within their respective non-profit organizations. In addition, we will also hear from trainers and mentors who were involved in the program. They will share their perspectives on the impact of the program, any challenges they faced while delivering the courses, and their mentoring journey. By hearing from both the participants and the trainers/mentors, we hope to give a comprehensive understanding of the ABW Academy’s impact and the importance of equipping individuals in non-profit organizations with the skills necessary to make data-driven decisions.

17:00 Plenary closure with introduction of our new sponsors and partners

17:30 Drinks

All our updates in your inbox