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PBD goes to Italy for G7 Meetings on Big Data

Our resident PhD and all around amazing Partnership Development Director, Leslie Cheung, is headed off to Italy to participate in the I-7 Innovators’ Strategic Advisory Board on People-Centered Innovation meetings. Those meetings are being held as part of Italy's G7 Presidency. The following is the first of several blogposts Leslie will be writing to document her travels:

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Getting Ready for the G7 in Italy

by Leslie Cheung

 

Thursday, September 21st

Always the prepared traveller, I started packing my suitcase on Monday. Since then, I have been slowly adding things that I will need for my trip to Turin (Torino to the Italians).  I have never been to Northern Italy, and in addition to looking forward to all the delicious cuisine coming my way, I am buzzing with excitement about the upcoming activities planned over the next week.  

As part of the Italian G7 Presidency, on September 25 Turin will host the first meeting of the “I-7 Innovators’ Strategic Advisory Board on People-Centered Innovation”, in which I was asked to participate and advise on one of this years core themes: Big Data.

I am proud and honoured to be part of this all-female delegation chosen to advise on the innovations and accompanying values that governments will need to proactively manage as the opportunities with Big Data grows. As a former academic, with a background in social policy and social work, I am bringing forward a perspective that focuses on the potential social impacts of big data and the role that governments and civil society actors can play in leveraging this data to improve the delivery of social services and its social outcomes.  

As one of the I-7 Innovators, I am expected to call governments to action by drawing attention to the gap between the current potential of technological advances and the actual adoption from institutional organizations. I will specifically be talking about the potential of linked administrative data that is collected by our governments at an individual level.  These data can help better evaluate and improve the outcomes of social programming in a number of domains.

I will also be speaking more specifically on two of these domains at the International Training Centre of the International Labour Organisation (ITC-ILO) in Turin on two separate panels in the days following the I-7 event.  

The first panel is part of the Academy on Social Security, where over 160 international participants will attend to learn about Big Data innovations in social protection.  The second panel is a interactive learning brown bag session about Big Data and the Future of work, as part of the Shifting Mindsets Series hosted by the ITC-ILO.  

This forces des femmes to the I-7 did not happen by accident. Women’s voices are vital to the success of any policy, but globally, our voices are often not thrust to the forefront. I commend the effort that was put into building the Canadian team, and hope that this purposeful representation will continue to extend to other often marginalised voices, including, but not limited to those of people of colour, indigenous communities, religious minorities, and queer communities.  

I am looking forward to meeting the rest of the team, and hopefully they will join me in celebrating our fierceness!

Follow along on my adventures @lesliePhD.