Thanks for agreeing to speak at (or at least considering to speak at) Harvard’s GOV 1005: Data in the Spring of 2020! My students appreciate you taking the time to chat with us. Notes:

  1. Class meets from 1:30 to 2:45 on Tuesday and Thursdays in the Tsai Auditorium in CGIS South at 1730 Cambridge Street in Cambridge, MA. What works best is if you arrive at 2:15.
  2. Successful talks rarely involve a Powerpoint presentation. Harvard students get way too much of that in all their other classes.
  3. Historically, the best talks have been either:
    • For technical speakers, a behind the scenes look at your workflow. Show us your GitHub, in all its messy, gorgeous glory. Take us on a tour of some hairy data cleaning code. Students really want to see how you do what you do.
    • For non-technical speakers (i.e., those who do not write code), show us a graphic or webpage or dashboard which you find interesting. Or something you look at every day. What does that graphic tell you about the world? Why did you present that data in that way?
  4. Many speakers are not allowed to discuss the details of their (proprietary) work. And that is OK! In those cases, a good solution is to pick some public domain work done by others in your field, whether you like it or not, and use that as a starting point for discussion.
  5. I encourage my students to jump in with questions from the start. (If you would prefer that they not, just let me know.)
  6. Many students have class directly after ours, so I must end class at exactly 2:45. Apologies in advance if I need to interrupt you!
  7. There is (very!) limited street parking in the area. Most speakers either Uber/Lyft or they walk from the Harvard Square T-Stop on the Red Line.
  8. Keep in mind that the class is introductory. Although students have a range of statistical backgrounds, the best talks focus on your substantive area of interest without getting bogged down with modelling details. Students want to hear about how the tools they are using matter outside the classroom.
  9. We have audio-visual capabilities, but getting set up on-the-fly can be tricky. You can certainly use a class laptop to go to any web page. If you want to use your own laptop, you are welcome to do so.
  10. We use a student Welcome Committee for each speaker. They will reach out to you to confirm two days before your talk and provide you with their phone/email contact information, in case something comes up and you can’t join us. They will also be waiting for you in the lobby outside of the classroom to offer assistance. If you want to send us a file for us to display, let the students know and they will arrange for it to be available for you.

Speakers – Spring 2020

Past Speakers

Fall 2019

Spring 2019

Fall 2018

  • September 24: Hugh Truslow, Data Sciences and Visualization, Harvard Library
  • September 26: Rafael Irizarry, Professor of Biostatistics, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
  • October 3: Cesar Hidalgo, Director, Collective Learning group at The MIT Media Lab
  • October 10: Natalia Urtubey, Executive Director, Imagine Boston 2030
  • October 15: Heidi Chen, Portfolio Manager, Acadian Asset Management
  • October 22: David Sparks, Director of Basketball Analytics for the Boston Celtics
  • October 24: Joe Harrington, Coordinator, Performance Science at Los Angeles Dodgers
  • October 31: Jeremy Rogalski, Director of Hockey Analytics for the Boston Bruins
  • November 7: Huan Wang, Research Scientist, Office of the Vice Provost for Advances in Learning at Harvard University
  • November 14: Mike Burke, Registrar, Harvard University
  • November 19: Daniel Koh, former Chief of Staff to the Mayor of Boston
  • November 28: Katherine Evans, Quantitative Analyst at Verily Life Sciences