Data Lab expands 2019 festival fringe and calls for events around Scotland to be a part

Scotland’s data innovation centre is expanding its fringe programme at next year’s DataFest, with an additional week of events across the country.

The Data Lab said that events, including meetups, debates, workshops, training programmes, and other activities focused on data innovation, are being accepted now on the DataFest website until 30 November.

Over the seven days of this year’s fringe, 45 events were hosted in seven cities, with 980 businesses participating and 2,000 attendees.

“The strength of our DataFest Fringe programme underlines Scotland’s position within the global data market,” said Gillian Docherty, the Lab’s chief executive. “It encourages our vibrant data science community to work together across Scotland and showcase the innovation, talent and cooperation that exists throughout the country.

“A wide range of events contributed to a dynamic fringe programme in 2018 and we’re thrilled to build on last year’s success with an additional week in 2019. I’d encourage anyone with a passion for data innovation in Scotland to submit a proposal to host an event in their community.”

Mark Sorsa-Leslie, founder and director at Beringar and speaker at the CENSIS fringe event in Glasgow, explained why he got involved: “It was really important for us as a business to share our story, to share the work that we’re doing and to demonstrate how data can have an impact on both everyday people’s lives and also the built environment. It’s not data for data’s sake, it’s data because it can change something. That’s the capability we’re growing in Scotland.”

Dr. Matthew Davis, director at Wittin and organiser of this year’s Dundee Public Data Jam at Abertay University, added: “We wanted to get people to have an interaction with the data. We wanted them to see that it’s there, we wanted them to try a new skill and from that, just move forward.”

Proposals are welcome from anyone who has an interest in data within Scotland, which includes those in leadership or technical roles from industry, public sector, academia or the wider data community. Event audiences can range from technical experts, to business professionals, to general public and school kids.