Data, People, Decisions (DPD)

Identifying, analyzing, visualizing and securing data for critical business decisions

The sheer scale and complexity of data in many organizations requires a new approach to visualize, analyze and use the data, in order to make the best decisions possible. The data must then be secured, curated and archived for future reference.

The iSchool’s expertise in information management, knowledge organization, information architecture, human-computer interaction, and cybersecurity can help solve an organization’s complex issue: how best to use the large amount of data available to it in order to solve their information problems.


  • The iSchool’s expertise in data, people and decisions can assist organizations in the following ways:
  • Securing and sharing large data sets in the cloud
  • Visualizing data in multiple formats
  • Making use of social media data for organizational decisions
  • Using online tagging to categorize content for ease of access
  • Repurposing information assets
  • Developing new computational methods for machine learning and data mining on large-scale data

Projects and Research

Large-scale Network Analysis in Africa
Analyzing terabytes of data from mobile phone communications and using data collected by operators to understand the social network process of adoption, diffusion, and churn. 

Analyzing and Visualizing Social Media Data at SoMe Lab
Twitter feeds from Occupy Wall Street were collected, curated and analyzed to understand their relationships to one another and their geographic flow.

Online/Social Dating
Researchers are studying how online dating sites create policies for data sharing, privacy, profile validation and mobile platforms.

Understanding Collaborative Work in Social Projects
Investigating behaviors of people working anonymously but collaboratively in large social media projects to determine what project management techniques work best in online environments.

Diagnosing Consumer Behavior in Africa
Studying the purchasing patterns of millions of telecom subscribers to understand how the provision of new product information affects short-term decisions and long-term contract choice.

Researchers have developed a system for extracting and aggregating problems from help requests, bug reports, discussion boards, to help developers design better software.

Smart Cities
A framework to make government information more visible and accessible to people online.

Faculty Experts

Joshua Blumenstock
Bob Boiko
Karen Fisher
Ron Johnson
Andy Ko
Bob Mason
David McDonald
Karine Nahon
Jochen Scholl
Emma Spiro
Joseph T. Tennis