Sara Watson: Making Data Work – Taking Personalization Personally

Sara Watson

Technology critic Sara Watson believes that when it comes to making data work, the line between personalization and discrimination can be a blurry one.

In her keynote for Strata + Hadoop World, Sara makes the case for personalization signals that give context to personalization and expose levers of control to users and asserts that more interactive approaches to personalization will be necessary to build consumers’ trust and account for the appropriate uses of their data.

Watch the rest of Sara’s presentation in Singapore below:

Sara Watson Sara Watson is a technology critic, an affiliate with the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University, a writer in residence at Digital Asia Hub, and a Fellow at the Tow Center for Digital Journalism at Columbia University.

She presents at technology conferences around the globe, including SXSW and O’Reilly Strata. Her research and written work has appeared in Columbia Journalism Review, The Atlantic, Wired, Gizmodo, Motherboard, Harvard Business Review, Al Jazeera America, and Slate.

Sara began her career as an enterprise technology analyst at The Research Board (Gartner, Inc.), exploring implications of technological trends for Fortune 500 CIOs. She holds an MSc in the Social Science of the Internet with distinction from the Oxford Internet Institute, where her award winning thesis examined the personal data practices of the Quantified Self community. She graduated from Harvard College magna cum laude with a joint degree in English and American literature and film studies.

Sara‘s keynotes are:

  • Big data, algorithms, and personal data: “Taking Personalization Personally,” exploring the human impacts of data as it is collected, interpreted, and used for decision making and personalization in our lives.
  • Artificial intelligence: “The AI Story So Far,” on the dominant apocalyptic narratives we focus on about AI, and why we need more grounded, practical stories to understand our human-machine relationships with AI
  • Smart cities: grounded Singapore case study as a test bed for smart city issues of the future
  • Wearable tech and the Quantified Self: what consumers do with data, and what we can learn about making data accessible and manageable for users

Contact us if you would like to engage Sara Watson to speak at your next conference.