• Census 2020 and the Illinois Count Me In 2020

    The Microsoft Technology Center Chicago

    Census 2020 is coming up and there is more at stake than at any other Census in our time. $20 billion in federal funding comes to Illinois each year in dollars which are allocated by U.S. Census data. This critical funding supports vital programs like Medicaid, highway infrastructure, and programs that aid low-income households, rural communities, and communities of color. If Illinoisans are undercounted during the 2020 Census, fewer resources will come to the state. Additionally, since congressional seats are determined by Census data, an undercount will also have serious political ramifications. Forefront formed the Illinois Count Me In 2020 program, a statewide coalition to do concentrated outreach in hard-to-count communities, provide safe spaces for self-reporting purposes and help educate and canvass for get-out-the-count efforts. Every state gets one shot, once a decade, to get it right. Come hear how we can ensure a fair and accurate count in the 2020 decennial census.

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  • Tom Schenk, Former Chief Data Officer for the City of Chicago

    The Microsoft Technology Center Chicago

    Currently Director of Analytics at KPMG, former Chief Data Officer of the City Tom Schenk is one of the foremost advocates of open government data. More details to come, but please note that the date is May 8th, the 2nd Wednesday of the month.

  • Bike Lane Data

    The Microsoft Technology Center Chicago

    Come learn about how Bike Lane Uprising (BikeLaneUprising.com) got started, the data we're collecting, and what we've able to do with that data. Bike Lane Uprising, is a cyclist-led civic tech platform making it easy to report bike lane obstructions. While many miles of bike lanes exist, they’re often blocked by vehicles that use them as free parking. Blocking bike lanes is dangerous for cyclists as it forces them into faster moving traffic. By creating a central database of bike lane obstructions uploaded by members, we are able to highlight problem areas and trends surrounding bike lane violations. Bike Lane Uprising works with local organizations, city departments, and companies in an effort to prevent future bike lane obstructions. Cyclists from over 60 cities have also signed up and our work has gained local and national headlines. After launching Bike Lane Uprising in Chicago, over 8,000 bike lane obstructions have been submitted to our database in just over a year. Over 6,000 of those were recorded in Chicagoland area alone. From these submissions, we’ve identified over 1,000 repeat bike lane obstructors. We’ve also reached out directly to many companies, including ride share services, corporations, and even construction companies. Our communications have led to changes in city infrastructure, company policies, as well as driver education. Collectively, we have the tools to make cities safer for cyclists, pedestrians, and drivers.

  • Illinois Green Alliance Data

    The Microsoft Technology Center Chicago

    The Illinois Green Alliance is a member funded and directed non-profit organization working to transform the region’s built environment to become ecologically sustainable, profitable, and healthy. Illinois Green has created data tracking and visualization tools to improve the tracking of organization’s strategic goals. This includes internal organizational data of their work, visibility and outreach. It also includes an external component that helps our community and the public better understand their sustainability project work, its ability to make a difference in neighborhoods and how they can connect and contribute.

  • A New City O/S: Unlocking Data for Public Good with Stephen Goldsmith

    The Microsoft Technology Center Chicago

    Please join former mayor and Harvard professor Stephen Goldsmith as we discuss "distributed governance", a model that allows public officials to mobilize new resources, surface ideas and data from unconventional sources, and arm employees with the information they need to become pre-emptive problem solvers. When we last hosted Professor Goldsmith, he had written The Responsive City at the genesis of the Civic Tech Movement. His latest book, A New City O/S now looks at what can be done when you have open, collaborative, and distributed governance. At a time when trust is dropping precipitously and American government at the national level has fallen into a state of long-term, partisan-based gridlock, local government can still be effective—indeed more effective and even more responsive to the needs of its citizens. Professor Goldsmith proposes a new operating system for cities based on the premise of unlocking data. You won't want to miss this one. Professor Goldsmith is the Daniel Paul Professor of the Practice of Government and the Director of the Innovations in American Government Program at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. He currently directs Data-Smart City Solutions, a project to highlight local government efforts to use new technologies that connect breakthroughs in the use of big data analytics with community input to reshape the relationship between government and citizen. He previously served as Deputy Mayor of New York and Mayor of Indianapolis, where he earned a reputation as one of the country's leaders in public-private partnerships, competition, and privatization. Stephen was also the chief domestic policy advisor to the George W. Bush campaign in 2000, the Chair of the Corporation for National and Community Service, and the district attorney for Marion County, Indiana from 1979 to 1990.

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  • Chicago Public Libraries and Data

    The Microsoft Technology Center Chicago

    At the Chicago Public Libraries, Michelle Frisque is the Chief of Technology, Content & Innovation. In that role, Michelle is not only responsible for data collection and analysis, she is chartered with identifying and recognizing information technology trends that will benefit the library and their users, sharing information with colleagues, and then successfully planning for and implementing those new technologies within the system. Since libraries are now cornerstones of civic life and bedrocks of civil society, how they use data and how they produce data takes center stage. Please join us for a lively discussion with the Chicago Public Libraries on January 9th (note that this is not the typical date due to New Year's). We will meet, as always, at the Microsoft Technology Center. --------------------------------------------------------------------- Code of Conduct We maintain a user group that empowers everyone to learn and to contribute to the study of data and civic life. The Chicago City Data Users Group is considered a safe space. A safe space inspires trust and allows us all to contribute and discover. Discrimination, harassment, and non-inclusive or uncomfortable conditions diminish what we can achieve together. As such, we do not tolerate harassing or disrespectful behavior, messages, images, or interactions by any event participant, in any form, at any aspect of the program. We do not tolerate any behavior that is degrading to any gender, race, sexual orientation or disability We encourage everyone to assist in creating a welcoming and safe environment. Please report any concerns, harassing behavior, or suspicious or disruptive activity to the user group organizers, the event host, or the nearest security guard or staff. The Chicago City Data Users Group reserves the right to refuse admittance to, or remove any person from the meetup at any time in its sole discretion.

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  • Office of Emergency Management GIS Data

    The Microsoft Technology Center Chicago

    The Office of Emergency Management and Communications provides residents of Chicago with prompt and reliable 911 service for police, fire and emergency medical services and coordinates major emergency response. Their enormous and important charter is to manage incidents, coordinate events, operate communications systems, and provide technology, among other forms of support, to protect lives and property in the City of Chicago. And central to all of this is geospatial data. Join us as we welcome Joe Kezon, GIS Manager for the City of Chicago's Office of Emergency Management and Communications on December 5th, while enjoying pizza. Please let me know if you would like to discuss any special accommodations. Code of Conduct: -------------------------- We maintain a user group that empowers everyone to learn and to contribute to the study of data and civic life. The Chicago City Data Users Group is considered a safe space. A safe space inspires trust and allows us all to contribute and discover. Discrimination, harassment, and non-inclusive or uncomfortable conditions diminish what we can achieve together. As such, we do not tolerate harassing or disrespectful behavior, messages, images, or interactions by any event participant, in any form, at any aspect of the program. We do not tolerate any behavior that is degrading to any gender, race, sexual orientation or disability We encourage everyone to assist in creating a welcoming and safe environment. Please report any concerns, harassing behavior, or suspicious or disruptive activity to the user group organizers, the event host, or the nearest security guard or staff. The Chicago City Data Users Group reserves the right to refuse admittance to, or remove any person from the meetup at any time in its sole discretion.

  • Esri: GIS and GeoDev

    The Microsoft Technology Center Chicago

    Esri is a pioneer in the GIS space, but mapping is just of the tip of the iceberg. They develop software that provides advanced analytics handle billions of data points so you can move beyond a single snapshot to investigate complex questions that span space and time. Further, they have a rich developer community that bridges mapping, data analytics, and dev. We asked them if they could share with you what we saw, and they were happy to oblige! Join us on October 3rd at the Microsoft Technology Center for an evening of geospatial data fun. And of course, there will be pizza! Looking for our future topics? In the coming months we are going to get some great insights into how different departments of the city produce, use, and share data. Keep checking in, as we are scheduling: Chicago Transit Authority data Chicago Public Library data Chicago Police Department GIS data. Please let us know if you would like to discuss any special accommodations. Code of Conduct: We maintain a user group that empowers everyone to learn and to contribute to the study of data and civic life. The Chicago City Data Users Group is considered a safe space. A safe space inspires trust and allows us all to contribute and discover. Discrimination, harassment, and non-inclusive or uncomfortable conditions diminish what we can achieve together. As such, we do not tolerate harassing or disrespectful behavior, messages, images, or interactions by any event participant, in any form, at any aspect of the program. We do not tolerate any behavior that is degrading to any gender, race, sexual orientation or disability We encourage everyone to assist in creating a welcoming and safe environment. Please report any concerns, harassing behavior, or suspicious or disruptive activity to the user group organizers, the event host, or the nearest security guard or staff. The Chicago City Data Users Group reserves the right to refuse admittance to, or remove any person from the meetup at any time in its sole discretion.

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  • Metropolitain Planning Council: Transportation data and research

    The Microsoft Technology Center Chicago

    The Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) is an 84-year-old nonprofit planning and policy organization that is dedicated to building a more sustainable, equitable, and prosperous Chicago region. MPC's core work involves housing and community development, transportation, natural resource management, environmental stewardship, and good governance. Join Transportation Associate Jeremy Glover to learn about some of the transportation issues MPC is currently exploring, and the broad range of local and national data MPC uses to understand how people in the Chicago region travel. If you need special accommodations, please let [masked] know.

  • Election Data with BallotReady

    The Microsoft Technology Center Chicago

    2018 is a key year to think about elections and election data. BallotReady makes digital tools to inform and turn out voters, every race and every election. Started in 2015, BallotReady has been live in 12 states covering over 15,000 candidates and had over 1 million visits to the site. In 2018, they are covering all 50 states, all the way down the ballot. Come and learn about all of the great work that is being done using election data, and how it can help the fundamental cornerstone of our democracy - voting. Need an accommodation? Please let me know ([masked]).