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Igniting Change Podcast Season 3: Episode 22

Rachel Wells, Senior Manager of Community Programs at DataKind, joins us to talk about how she enables social impact at her organisation with AI & data science.


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There’s no denying the importance and power that data holds. We collect it from a variety of sources, for a variety of reasons.

Data science then helps us make sense of this data and can be instrumental for decision-making in both for-profit and non-profit organisations.

In this episode, our hosts were so excited to (virtually) sit down with Rachel Wells to find out more about how data science enables social impact!

Meet Rachel

Rachel is a former data scientist turned programme manager who is using data science to serve humanity.

She always valued contributing to greater society and grew up doing a lot of different volunteering activities. This was an area she knew she wanted to work in for her professional career. However, with her academic interests in maths and statistics, Rachel wasn’t sure how to combine her passion with purpose.

It wasn’t until Rachel completed a couple of internship opportunities during college that she saw how data science could help social impact organisations.

Unfortunately, no one was hiring in that space at the time, but this opened a different door for Rachel at IBM. She gained many experiences in this role, from client relationships to applied data science, that helped her transition into the non-profit sector. 

After volunteering with DataKind since 2016, Rachel joined as a member of staff in 2020! Her role now involves capacity building and professional development as well as being more focused on community building.

It’s been really incredible to see how the whole industry has matured, transitioned, and increased in the use of data science over the last decade. But of course there’s still lots more to be done

Rachel Wells, Senior Manager of Community Programs, DataKind

About DataKind

By utilising AI and data science, DataKind is tackling the world’s toughest challenges!

Founded in 2012, this global non-profit has Chapters in the US, UK, India, and Singapore, alongside a community of over 30,000 volunteers. 

DataKind enables volunteers to partner with high-impact organisations, providing necessary access to data science. This results in evidence-based decision-making, increased efficiency, and enhanced data literacy.

Through its programmes, DataKind has completed a range of projects including helping community health workers transport patients and medical samples quicker, identifying neighborhoods at risk of fires, and enabling conservationists to quickly mine research.

Listen to the full episode here

To hear more of the incredible conversation with Rachel listen now using the links below!

For more things tech for good, stay tuned to our blog or shout us a holla to get in touch with us, we would love to hear from you 💚

Published on July 26, 2023, last updated on July 26, 2023

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