Talk Series: Everything is a Proxy

As part of DTD, we invite speakers across disciplines to present and facilitate discussion about the theme Everything is a Proxy.

Proxies in data models are used when we are unable to capture the complexity of a phenomenon of interest. It is difficult and quite often impossible, for example, to quantify (or even qualify) things like happiness or livability, yet we try to model those concepts with data like number of trees or household income. The ways that these proxies come together to score our cities, our neighborhoods, our friends, and ourselves can be dangerous and misleading, so much so that they are highlighted as a critical component of what Cathy O’Neill calls, “Weapons of Math Destruction”.

Proxies can also be fun and make you smile and act as a bridge between unconnectable things. In this series of talks, we ask our speakers to reflect on and share with us their stories and data projects that speak to the proxies of the unrepresentable value of our city and its citizens.

2019 Talks

Talks to be announced. Stay tuned!

We are proud to present the work of the following artists. Our artists come from backgrounds ranging from fine arts, engineering, urban planning, and more.