Thursday, April 7, 2016
Joan Kjaer


​WorldCanvass tackles informatics—also known as big data—on its final program of the 2015-2016 season. Guests from the diverse fields of computer science, medicine, sociology, public health, and geographical and sustainability sciences will discuss the proliferation of big data and their attempts to both understand and utilize this massive and, in many ways, untamed digital resource.  “Big Data: Big Brother or Big Sister?” is the topic at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, April 19, at FilmScene.  WorldCanvass is free and open to the public.
WorldCanvass is a highlight event of the UI’s first Informatics Week, April 14-23, sponsored by the University of Iowa Informatics Initiative (UI3) and cross-campus partners. The week is designed to showcase ongoing informatics-related research, central resources available to support informatics activities, and educational and career opportunities in the burgeoning field of informatics.


Big Data: Big Brother or Big Sister?

Part 1- 5:00-5:25

What is big data and what can it tell us? 

Miguel Encarnação—senior vice president and chief innovation officer, ACT; adjunct assistant professor, UI Department of Computer Science

Ion (Bodi) Vasi—associate professor, UI Department of Sociology

Part 2- 5:30-5:55

How informatics is changing medicine

Richard Smith—director, Iowa Institute of Human Genetics and the Molecular Otolaryngology and Renal Research Laboratories; Sterba Hearing Research Professor, UI Department of Otolaryngology

Padmini Srinivasan—professor, UI Department of Computer Science

Part 3—6:00-6:25

Security and privacy challenges within social networks 

M. Zubair Shafiq—assistant professor, UI Department of Computer Science

Corinne Peek-Asa—professor, UI College of Public Health

Caglar Koylu—assistant professor, UI Department of Geographical and Sustainability Sciences

The program, which is produced by UI International Programs and takes place at Iowa City’s non-profit cinema arts organization FilmScene, 118 East College Street, is free and open to the public.  Concessions will be available for purchase and audience members are invited to enjoy a social hour from 4:00-5:00 p.m. preceding the show.

WorldCanvass is recorded before a live audience for later broadcast on UITV, YouTube, iTunes, and the Public Radio Exchange. Podcasts can be downloaded for free from iTunes and past programs are available through IP’s website.

WorldCanvass is a production of UI International Programs in collaboration with FilmScene and University of Iowa Video Services. For more information on WorldCanvass, contact Joan Kjaer at or visit the WorldCanvass web page.

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