Smart & Resilient Communities / Data Science for Social Good panel

Thursday, October 28, 2021 – 2:00–3:00 p.m. CT / 3:00–4:00 p.m. ET

With a focus on how data science impacts human lives, this panel will explore opportunities for multidisciplinary engagement across the Midwest, to help build a community of researchers and practitioners. Bring your questions and interests on the broad range of data science work around people and their communities, systems, infrastructures, and services. What collaborations would you like to engage in? What data would be useful to have?

Watch the recording on our YouTube channel


Anita Say Chan (moderator), Associate Professor, School of Information Sciences and Department of Media and Cinema Studies, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Anita Say Chan is an Associate Professor in the School of Information Sciences and Department of Media and Cinema Studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her research and teaching interests include globalization and digital cultures, innovation networks and the “periphery,” science and technology studies in Latin America, and feminist and decolonial approaches to technology. She received her PhD in 2008 from the MIT Doctoral Program in History; Anthropology; and Science, Technology, and Society. Her first book on the competing imaginaries of global connection and information technologies in network-age Peru, Networking Peripheries: Technological Futures and the Myth of Digital Universalism, was released by MIT Press in 2014. She is a Fiddler Innovation Faculty Fellow at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications, where she directs the Community Data Clinic. With colleagues in the Computer Science Department at UIUC, she co-leads the Just Infrastructures Initiative. She is a 2020–21 Faculty Affiliate with the Data & Society Research Institute, and is the UIUC Provost Fellow for International Affairs and Global Strategies.

Tayo Fabusuyi, Assistant Research Scientist, Transportation Research Institute, University of Michigan

Tayo Fabusuyi is a research faculty member at the Transportation Research Institute, University of Michigan (UMTRI). His research interests are in Urban Systems and Operations Research, specifically designing and implementing initiatives that support sustainable and resilient communities, with a focus on efficiency and equity issues. Drawing on both quantitative and qualitative data, his research develops and applies Operations Research methods to urban systems issues in a manner that emphasizes theory-driven solutions with demonstrated value added.
Before joining UMTRI, Dr. Fabusuyi was a Planning Economist at the African Development Bank and an adjunct Economics faculty member at Carnegie Mellon University, where he received his PhD in Engineering and Public Policy. He is an active member of the Transportation Research Board (TRB) of the National Academies Emerging and Innovative Public Transportation and Technology Committee (AP020) and the subcommittee on Equity of Innovative Mobility Systems.

Valentin Pentchev, Director of Information Technology, Indiana University Network Science Institute (IUNI)

Valentin (Val) Pentchev joined IUNI as the Director of Information Technology in January of 2015. He manages a team of IT professionals responsible for aiding IU faculty and research staff in achieving their scientific goals. He is responsible for the maintenance and management of data and data access, development of tools and applications as well as maintaining and ensuring the growth of the current technology infrastructure.

Kimberly E. Zarecor, Professor of Architecture, Iowa State University

Kimberly Elman Zarecor is Professor of Architecture in the College of Design at Iowa State University where she has been teaching courses in architectural history and design since 2005. She holds a MArch degree (1999) and PhD in Architecture (2008) from Columbia University. Her historical research examines the cultural and technological history of architecture and urbanism in the former Czechoslovakia. Her new research is about quality of life in small and shrinking rural communities in Iowa, which is funded by the National Science Foundation through the Smart & Connected Communities Program.