Transferability of Big Data, AI, Data Science tools and innovation into other domains. E.g.:
Deep Tech advisory. We established the “Druid Collective” to help startups with a very complex science or technology base around the world to bring their breakthrough potential from labs to real-world impact. E.g., Marck Pollock Trust and curing paralysis (see video).
Strategic advice for the UAE Statistical Innovation Authority as a member of the Advisory Board; helping to assess market trends. Our scope is to localize the opportunities and challenges, maximizing potential impact in improving government services.
Logistics optimization of hazelnuts for-profit social enterprise in Bhutan. Largest employer after the government, which is more than doubling the income of more than 10k farmers; while preventing soil degradation of fallow lands. Road conditions in Bhutan offer a set of unique challenges, while the community reach and footprint of the company operations provide the necessary data inputs to create and optimize the collection of the produce. Development, and training, on the necessary data-science tools to feed, connect and optimize best routing to all farmers, and dispatch systems.
Satellogic – VP Social Impact
- “Open Impact” Program. “Open Impact” is a technical program to help accelerate the use of satellite images for Social Impact projects, especially using hyperspectral data. We believe Hyperspectral (having many spectral bands, beyond the typical three of red, green and blue) can have a huge potential. Historically hyperspectral has not been available outside of military applications or in minimal supply. The Open Impact program includes access to Terabytes of data, software development tutorials, and a series of proto-ideas and code to help start potential social impact projects, e.g., around coastal degradation, water quality, change detection or agricultural accessibility.
World Bank Group – Innovation Labs
Improve Women’s rights in Kosovo flying drones. 70% of the world’s population lack access to land rights systems. That is the case of the women of the Krusha e Madhe village in Kosovo, where all men (landowners) and boys were killed in the war. The World Bank is helping with a 12M$ Real Estate and Cadastre Project. Instead of the traditional year-long process using planes at a regional scale, we flew drones to create a complete high-resolution cadaster-quality map in 3 days. 2016 World Bank Innovation Award.
OpenTraffic in South Asia. The World Bank’s OpenTraffic initiative launched in the Philippines in late 2015. It uses real-time data from GrabTaxi, the region’s homegrown rival to Uber, to give planners a clearer picture of traffic flows. The data is also used to optimize traffic light timing and evaluate transport scenarios during peak-times, flooding, congestion, accidents, … FT article
Satellite State of Play. The satellite industry is undergoing a profound revolution on capabilities and assets. This open data, open source site aims to bridge a deep awareness gap. There are excellent examples of development projects using satellite assets. However, these islands of innovation remain confined to those already aware and interested in these options. If we are to mainstream operational value of satellites for development, we need many more development colleagues onboard. HuffPost article
Nightlights.io Eyes in the sky help track rural electrification. More than one billion people still lack access to electricity today. Governments and electric utilities around the world are mobilizing vast sums of money to close the access gap, especially in rural areas that are home to those lacking electricity. Nightlights.io analyzes the nightly light signatures of all 600,000 India villages for last 20-year period (from 1993 to 2013), and allows easy visualization of trends and comparative analysis. Truly Big Data, all using open data and open source. World Economic Forum Davos article
Mapbox – Chief Scientist
Search for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370. Overnight, in the wake of missing plane MH370 we partnered with satellite providers to consolidate all space search efforts, and to crowdsource its search within hours of each satellite image collection. Unfortunately, nothing was found, but many people around the world were able to contribute and found thousands of false positives, which lead to global coverage of the efforts in Skynews, Wired, …
Cloudless Satellite Images. One of the biggest problems of satellite images is the presence of clouds. At Mapbox, the satellite team created a pipeline to remove these clouds and improve their appearance using all available images for each pixel on Earth. 3 years later Google Maps used this method for mid-resolution zoom levels. Wired coverage of the method.
Climate Change Adaptation – Gain.org
- Climate Change Adaptation Index. The Global Adaptation Index was the first open-data open-sourced peer-reviewed framework to measure Vulnerability and Readiness with a focus on private sector angle on Adaptation to climate change. Washington Post Article.
Satellite & Rocket Science postdoc
Monitoring the Surface of the Sun. Magnetic activity in the Sun can disrupt our geomagnetic shield (“Space Weather”). At the time I used several NASA rockets and satellites to understand the origin and help predict incoming solar storms. One of the tools I develop consolidated several satellites into a live map of the solar surface as a whole and ballistic back-projected solar magnetically affecting the Earth. 6 years of the Solar surface
NASA Astronomy Picture of the Day. We created, at the time, the highest resolution images of the atmosphere and surface of the Sun. We used real-time interferometric correction plus post-facto speckle image reconstruction. The above movie and similar movies allow students and solar scientists to study how granules and sunspots evolve as well as how magnetic sunspot regions produce powerful solar flares. NASA APOD
Talks and keynotes
Linking related slides, video, or article if available.
- Video explaining our project with the World Economic Forum to empower Kakuma refugees via entrepreneurship and digital market skills. Started Summer 2018
- 2nd Big Data Africa School. Cape Town, South Africa. Sept. 14, 2018. Talk to students on Impact Science.
- August 2018. Regular contributor on Impact Science for the Spanish National Radio “Onda Cero” within the program “JELO en verano”. E.g. reporting on climate change
- July 2018. Article on refugee policy for “El País”, biggest national newspaper: “Ser o estar refugiado, esa el cuestión”.
- Video explaining our project with the World Economic Forum and Druid Collective to help a paralyzed blind person walk again using external electrical stimulation and robotic exoskeletons. Started Summer 2017
- April 2018. Noreña, Asturias Spain, “Pobreza mundial y la promesa de la revolución digital” [Spanish]
- April 2018. World Bank, Washington DC Spring meetings: Satellogic “Open Impact” program
- February 2018. Ignite Madrid [Spanish]
- December 2017. Award, “Compromiso Asturias XXI”, Honorary member of the Year [ Spanish]
- November 2017. From Dubai, for the Global Future Council on Space. Space could be the final frontier for the world’s digital divide
- November 2017. From Barcelona, at the Symposium on Big Data and Rare Diseases: Big Data y Enfermedades Raras
- October 2017. From Madrid at South Summit, “The Data Revolution”
- October 2017. From Madrid at South Summit on Celera’s Pasion por Talento
- September 2017. From Goettingen (Germany), at the Max Planck conference where I did my PhD 9 years earlier: Life after a PhD: ❤️ the “option B”, leaving
- August 2017. Talk at SETI on Impact Science
- July 2017. From San Francisco, after wrapping up my work in Bhutan: In defense of Cheap Data Science
- July 2017. Documenting our work on Logistics in Bhutan: Building an open-source national-scale logistic system in Bhutan
- July 2017. On the award of “Asturiano del mes”. Bruno Sánchez-Andrade Nuño, “Asturiano del mes” por su visión social de las nuevas tecnologías
- June 2017. From Dalian (China) at the Annual meeting of the New Champions. What Bhutanese hazelnuts tell us about using data for good
- April 2017. From Argentina, CNN interview
- January 2017. Satsummit.io Session “A Sustainable planet”
- December 2016. From Barcelona, at TEDx: The future is not about data
- December 2016. From Madrid, Fundación Rafael del Pino España digital: Hacia una política pública basada en datos
- November 2016. Via TVE Tips, Jóvenes Talentos
- November 2016. Via El Pais. De una aldea de 10 casas a líder de innovación del Banco Mundial
- Jan 2016. From Kosovo, on using drones for women’s rights: Drones Offer Innovative Solution for Local Mapping
- Jan 2016. From Davos, annoucing nightlights.io World Bank Project: Eyes in the sky help track rural electrification
- Jan 2016. From Davos WEF conference: Big data at Davos a year later, delivering innovation value
- Sep 2015. Announcing satsummit.io World Bank Project: Satellites for development: What’s in it for you?
- June 2015. World Bank Conference on Big Data Korea shows how to use Big Data for development
- March 2015. From Dubai WEF Global Agenda Council on Space: Bringing Space down to Earth
- Jan 2015. From Davos, on Big Data for Development. Big Data in Davos
- Feb 2014. Via El Confidencial, El asturiano que cambió la NASA por el ‘dream team’ de los mapas digitales