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A Data Revolution for All

Summary:
It has now been almost two decades since the original launch of DATA, a platform that marshaled 0 billion in debt forgiveness for poor countries, and another billion in contributions for health and development. In a world with more data and data-science expertise than ever, it's time to revive that innovative spirit. NEW YORK – Science has revolutionized medicine and agriculture over the last 100 years, particularly for the poorest of the poor. Achievements ranging from the treatment of hookworm to the green revolution attest to its power. The Truth About the Trump Economy Bryan R. Smith/AFP via Getty Images

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It has now been almost two decades since the original launch of DATA, a platform that marshaled $100 billion in debt forgiveness for poor countries, and another $50 billion in contributions for health and development. In a world with more data and data-science expertise than ever, it's time to revive that innovative spirit.

NEW YORK – Science has revolutionized medicine and agriculture over the last 100 years, particularly for the poorest of the poor. Achievements ranging from the treatment of hookworm to the green revolution attest to its power.

Looking ahead, data science has even greater potential to revolutionize everything from how we treat disease to how we build more inclusive economies. History shows us that when the power of science and technology is brought to bear on society’s greatest challenges, millions of lives can be improved.

Pick any problem you see around the world: the raging wildfires that are devastating Australia; the opioid epidemic that is ravaging poor communities in the United States; the world’s worst refugee crisis since World War II. Confronting these problems and others – from poverty and inequality to conservation and climate change – requires the responsible application of data, and the insights drawn from them.

Yet, while there have been great advances in data science in the private sector, many social-sector and civic organizations are lagging behind. With proper support, they can leverage data analytics to make their work go further and faster, ultimately helping more people. Just last year, our two organizations – Mastercard and The Rockefeller Foundation – committed to addressing this gap. By becoming more data-science driven, all organizations can...

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