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DataFest19 Kicks off, Showcasing Scotland’s Leading Role in Data & AI

Ross Kelly



The two-week festival will include a series of meetups, workshops, debates and training programmes, culminating in the two-day Data Summit on 21st and 22nd March.

The UK’s first ever festival of data innovation, DataFest, commences today, featuring more than 60 events across Scotland in the next two weeks.

Now in its third year, the event will focus on the economic and social benefits of data-driven innovation. The theme for DataFest19 is collaboration and doing #datatogether.

This year’s festival culminates with the two-day DataSummit on the 21st and 22nd of March, which will include speakers such as Christopher Wylie, the Facebook-Cambridge Analytics whistleblower, and Google’s chief decision scientist, Cassie Kozyrov.

Dr Sue Black, technology evangelist and Professor of Computer Science at Durham University, will also speak at DataSummit.

Other headline events include Data Talent, which will focus on the development of skills in Scotland’s technology industry, as well as Data Tech, an event introduced this year in response to requests for a technical event featuring industry, public sector and academic work.

Related: BBC Science Star to Address 100 Scottish Schoolgirls at DataFest

Gillian Docherty, chief executive at The Data Lab, commented: “We’re thrilled to kick off our biggest DataFest to date.

“DataFest will showcase Scotland’s leading role in data science and artificial intelligence on an international stage while offering an unprecedented networking platform where you can interact with local and international talent, industry, academia and data enthusiasts.”

Docherty added: “DataFest continues to grow each year through demand for more events and opportunities to connect industry, academia and talent, as Scotland bands together to collaborate and learn from each other.”

Women in Data Science, which is part of the worldwide Women in Data Science initiative by Stanford University, will see Dr Hannah Fry address more than 80 Scottish schoolgirls to inspire an interest in STEM.

The girls will also participate in the final of the Cyber Treasure Hunt, organised by the Turing’s Testers – a group of sixth-year students from St Kentigern’s Academy.

Related: Datathon Event Challenges Data Experts to Drive Productivity Changes

Other fringe events will include a range of meetups, debates, workshops and training programmes hosted by industry, academic and public sector. Events are scheduled to take place across Scotland in Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Inverness, Aberdeen, Stirling, Kilmarnock and Elgin.

For more information on tickets, visit –

Ross Kelly

Staff Writer

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