The Potency of Data

“Big Data.” The concept seems to be on the minds and lips of those even remotely interested in business trends in the 21st century. And yet, as alluded to by Matthew Quint, director of Columbia University’s Center on Global Brand Leadership, the reality of Big Data is often misunderstood. During his presentation, the fourth in the five-part Transforming Architectural Practice Series, Quint presented case studies of data usage by corporations, debunked myths about data, and outlined a compelling case for the value of data collection and analysis in architectural practice.

Quint pointed out that data is all around us. It is collected by every mobile phone, appliance, and surveillance camera in the world. The Internet alone generates incalculable reams of it. In and of itself, however, this information has no practical use. It is only noteworthy once it has been parsed, organized, cross-referenced, cleaned, and securely stored. Quint suggested it is only then that data becomes Big Data that can be used to generate a better product or service. Continue reading “The Potency of Data”

Doing Good is Good Business

The Professional Practice series “Transforming Architectural Practice” presented the second of five lectures on 03.31.14, addressing the topics of transparency, engagement and sustainability through a discussion of B Corps. Put simply, “B Corp is to business what Fair Trade certification is to coffee or USDA Organic certification is to milk,” or, in architecture, what Living Building Challenge certification is to the built world. B Corps are certified by the nonprofit B Lab to meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency. Continue reading “Doing Good is Good Business”