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Winton Chief Scientific Advisor David Hand  on February 1 delivered the 2017 Schrödinger Lecture at Imperial College, extolling the promise of big data while cautioning that data scientists must overcome many potential pitfalls to realise the benefits.

The annual Erwin Schrödinger Lecture takes its name from the renowned Austrian scientist, and previous speakers have included Professor Stephen Hawking of Cambridge University, the 2012 Physics Novel Laureate Professor Serge Haroche and Royal Society President Professor Sir Paul Nurse. 

In “Data, Data Everywhere But Let’s Just Stop and Think”, David Hand breaks these problems down into several categories: bad data, invisible data, changing data, alternative data, and misleading data – with informative examples of each. His recommendations include careful consideration of the origin of given data; thorough sense checks; and the introduction of a module on data quality in academic degrees: