The Ohio State University
Provost’s Discovery Themes Lecturer Program

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Registration is required, though the lecture is free and open to the public. Paid visitor parking is available at the Ohio Union South Garage. Please visit the lecture webpage for more information.

DJ Patil is perhaps the most influential data scientist in the world. Appointed by President Obama as the very first U.S. chief data scientist, he was tasked with making the largest organization in history—the U.S. Federal Government—a data-driven enterprise.

Working directly with the highest ranking officials in government, Patil’s efforts led to the establishment of nearly 40 chief data officer roles across a vast array of departments and programs. He helped establish new health care programs, including the Precision Medicine Initiative and the Cancer Moonshot; new criminal justice reforms including the Data-Driven Justice and Police Data Initiatives that cover more than 94 million Americans; and led the policy efforts related to national data. Patil’s experience in national security initiatives is extensive, and for his efforts he was awarded the Department of Defense’s Medal for Distinguished Public Service, the highest honor the department bestows on a civilian.

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In the private sector, he led the product teams at RelateIQ, which was acquired by Salesforce; was a founding board member for Crisis Text Line, which works to use new technologies to provide on-demand mental and crisis support; and was a member of the venture firm Greylock Partners. He also held the positions of chief scientist, chief security officer and head of the analytics and data product teams at the LinkedIn Corporation, where he co-coined the term “data scientist.” He also held a number of roles at Skype, PayPal, and eBay.

As a member of the faculty at the University of Maryland, his research focused on nonlinear dynamics and chaos theory and he helped start a major research initiative on numerical weather prediction. As an AAAS Science & Technology Policy Fellow for the Department of Defense, Dr. Patil directed new efforts to leverage social network analysis and the melding of computational and social sciences to anticipate emerging threats to the U.S. He has also co-chaired a major review of U.S. efforts to prevent bioweapons proliferation in Central Asia and co-founded the Iraqi Virtual Science Library (IVSL). In 2014 he was selected by the World Economic Forum as a Young Global Leader and is also a Member of the Council of Foreign Relations.

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