BiCDaS is a horizontal, interdisciplinary center striving for an integrative role at Bielefeld University. It brings together academics from different fields and institutions and stimulates cooperation.
Asked to formulate BiCDaS's mission in one sentence, we have decided for the following:
Unlocking data potentials with scientists, lecturers and students throughout Bielefeld UniversityBiCDaS's Mission
Our mission is, thus, about data and its potential in the university's context. This puts a strong emphasis on research data. Second we do not see us achieving these goals alone: BiCDaS is a university-wide network of partners.
Data Science will have a huge, beneficial impact on the research and teaching conducted every day at Bielefeld University. It will intensify interdisciplinarity and increase productiveness and expressiveness of research. To achieve this, BiCDaS focuses on five key areas:
It is our belief that Data Science is a field of knowledge in its own right and should be treated as such. We, therefore, support corresponding research activities aiming to assess and improve the use of data in science.
Data Science research is “research for research.” Methods and technologies developed in Data Science are beneficial for research in general. Therefore, BiCDaS aims to raise awareness about data science and to advertise its elements and philosophy among academics.
BiCDaS supports academics in incorporating Data Science in their daily work. This is achieved, for instance, by providing Data Literacy training or by organizing workshops. Furthermore, we support academics regarding questions related to Data Science.
The demand for Data Scientists in science and industry is enormous and growing. To meet their social obligations, universities need to establish degree-granting courses on Data Science and enshrine Data Literacy as a key objective for an academic education.
Data Science can be an integrative force not only within the university, but catalyse external partnerships. BiCDaS is fascilitating external partnerships with social associations, foundations, municipalities and enterprises. We emphasise mutual benefit and our scientific indipendence when pursueing scientific, data-centred partnerships
We live in a world of ubiquitously growing data sets, and these data sets often contain a huge deal of personal information. Generally speaking, it is the goal of Data Science to unearth information from data and make it useable. However, as far as personal information is involved, this rightful demand for insight must always be balanced against the rightful claim for privacy.
BiCDaS recognizes that the extraction of personal information from data can be destructive under unfavourable circumstances and that possible consequences should be carefully considered beforehand.
Furthermore, Data Science involves technology, and technology always needs to account for its usage. We, therefore, believe that Data Science should be ethical in a way that respects the privacy of the individual and requires good reasons for the extraction of personal information from data.
As an additional consequence of these convictions, we consider data security, including cryptography, data anonymization and identity and rights management, to be vital topics in Data Science.