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Keynote 2 - Cathy O'Neil Headshot.jpg
Cathy O’Neil
Data Scientist & Founder - ORCAA 
Hedge-fund quant, data scientist and data skeptic Cathy O’Neil, author of NY Times Best Seller Weapons of Math Destruction, will discuss how "objective" algorithms using big data could in fact reinforce human bias.

Cathy O’Neil earned a Ph.D. in math from Harvard, was a postdoc at the MIT math department, and a professor at Barnard College where she published a number of research papers in arithmetic algebraic geometry.


She then switched over to the private sector, working as a quant for the hedge fund D.E. Shaw in the middle of the credit crisis, and then for RiskMetrics, a risk software company that assesses risk for the holdings of hedge funds and banks.


She left finance in 2011 and started working as a data scientist in the New York start-up scene, building models that predicted people’s purchases and clicks.


She wrote Doing Data Science in 2013 and launched the Lede Program in Data Journalism at Columbia in 2014. She is a regular contributor to Bloomberg View and wrote the book Weapons of Math Destruction: how big data increases inequality and threatens democracy. She recently founded ORCAA, an algorithmic auditing company.

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