KEYNOTE: The place of location in the big data world
Dr Vanessa Lawrence CB, Director, Location International Ltd
So what actually is Big Data? Who determines what is included and what is not? These questions and their answers are variable. Looking through the eyes of different people and different organisations, helps create the answers. However, it is only now that many realise that the ‘where’ question is so vital to all Big Data to give it validity and to ensure the information from the analysis relates to real people based in real places. In this presentation, examples will be used to illustrate the issues and a challenge will be made as to when is data analytics really geospatial analysis? Should we be re-branding ourselves as geo-data scientists?
Dr Vanessa Lawrence CB, HonFREng, FRGS, FRICS, FCInstCES, FRSGS, CCMI, CGeog is working internationally as a senior advisor to governments, inter-governmental organisations including the World Bank and large private sector organisations.
She is a Director of Location International Ltd which provides strategic advice and full operational capacity globally, to the public and private sector, as to how to gain from improving their own use of location information to enhance their decision-making and to meet the ever changing needs of their customers and stakeholders.
In addition, Vanessa is a Non-Executive Director of the Satellite Applications Catapult, on the Advisory Boards of Seraphim Space LLP, the Space venture capital fund backed by the British Business Bank, and the Urban Big Data Centre, on the Steering Committee Member of IPP CommonSensing to support the Governments of Fiji, the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu to build resilience to the impacts of climate change and to improve access to climate finance, a Trustee of the Royal Geographical Society, the Honorary Colonel of 135 Geographic Squadron Royal Engineers, Honorary Vice-President of the Geographical Association, a Patron of MapAction and holds Visiting Professor positions at two UK Universities.
From 2000-2014, she was the Director General and CEO Ordnance Survey, Britain’s National Mapping Authority and the advisor to the British Government for issues involving mapping, surveying and geographic information. She is the longest serving Director General and CEO of Ordnance Survey since 1875.
From 2011-2015, she was a founding co-chair of the United Nations Committee of Experts on Global Geospatial Information Management (UN-GGIM).
Prior to joining the Civil Service, she held senior roles with the billion-dollar American software company, Autodesk and also the global media and publishing company, Pearson plc.