UBC participates in CUAC meeting held at UW

UBC faculty and students participate in Cascadia Urban Analytics Cooperative meeting at University of Washington.

On September 11, UBC faculty and DSSG students travelled to Seattle to meet with counterparts from the University of Washington for the second meeting of the Cascadia Urban Analytics Cooperative, or CUAC. This event builds upon the community and groundwork established at the CUAC Summit held earlier this past summer at UBC. 

On the first day of discussions, attendees identified joint research themes and formed research groups to pursue these projects. The two themes that emerged include a 'Neighbourhood Research Collective' and 'Development of Responsible Data Management Tools'. Specifically, the Neighbourhood Research Collective seeks to study how neighbourhoods change over time and the affect this has on the housing market and homelessness. Conversely, Responsible Data Management is less about a specific urban issue but more focussed on developing tools that have a horizontal impact across a breadth of topics by developing a platform that will facilitate data aggregation and sharing.

On the second day, Dr. Jonathan Fink--a visiting Professor at UBC in Urban Analytics--led a discussion with researchers and civic leaders from Seattle, Vancouver, Surrey, and Portland regarding the importance of adopting standardized urban metrics. The benefit of this would allow cities to quantitatively compare their performance with each other and with themselves over time. The ISO standard for cities (ISO 37120) was explored as a potential framework.

In closing, the event was a great success as we continued to develop a Cascadia research community around the subjects of data science and social, urban issues. We are very grateful to UW and the eScience Institute for hosting this wonderful event, and look forward to the next CUAC event.

The Cascadia Urban Analytics Cooperative (CUAC) is an applied, interdisciplinary, regional centre that brings together academic researchers, students, and public stakeholder groups to address topics affecting citizens of the Cascadia region. CUAC explores these topics, usually in an urban-context, by harnessing data science techniques for social good. The CUAC initiative is supported generously by Microsoft.

UBC Faculty and UBC DSSG students in attendance included: Murali Chandrashekaran, Penny Gurstein, Nathan Lauster, Kim McGrail, Guy Stecklov, Martino Tran, Raymond Ng, Saeid Allahdadian, Patricia Angkiriwang, Lap-tak Chu, Tony Hui, Patrick Laflamme, Sarah Neubauer, William Qi, and Raphael Roman.

Photo Credit: Emily Keller, CUAC.