What Data Can and Can’t Tell Us About Ourselves

Hannah Fry
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In this conversation, Steve Durbin, Chief Executive of the ISF and Hannah Fry discuss the challenge and imperative of communicating across demographics with simplicity and clarity; the power of storytelling; the moral tensions inherent in data mining; and more.

Hannah Fry

Dr Hannah Fry is an Associate Professor in the Mathematics of Cities at the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis at UCL. Her research applies to a wide range of social problems and questions, from shopping and transport to urban crime, riots and terrorism.

Hannah has also authored a number of books. Her latest, Hello World: How to be human in the age of the machine (Penguin Random House/Transworld), was shortlisted for the prestigious Bailie Gifford Prize for non-fiction and the Royal Society Book Prize.

I would say that it’s not possible to have data decide the answers for you… all they can do is to lay our potential trajectories of the future. And it has to be a human at the top of it all, who understands context, who understands nuance, who chooses the path ahead to follow.