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Press Release

Big Data vs. Climate Change: EMC and Citizen Scientists Team Up

EMC uses big data to better understand climate change as part of White House Climate Data Initiative program

Hopkinton, MA, December 9, 2014 – EMC Corporation, Pivotal and the Earthwatch Institute, in association with the Schoodic Institute at Acadia National Park, today announced Big Data vs. Climate Change: EMC & Citizen Scientists Team Up. This new program, announced in conjunction with the White House Climate Data Initiative, will enable the study of interactions between nature and climate and promote the engagement of citizen scientists using big data lakes, analytic tools and visualizations.

Around the world, researchers and citizen scientists are collecting data on the impact of climate change on our environment. The data is rich and full of insight, but also disparate and difficult for many people to understand. The new Big Data vs. Climate Change project plans to enhance the power of data being collected to provide increased analytics and present interactive visualizations of information in forms more accessible to citizens, educators and scientists worldwide.

Using best of breed data lake architecture including EMC platforms and Pivotal software solutions, the program will begin with researchers working in Acadia National Park to understand bird migration and pull in the publically available citizen science data sets from eBird, iNaturalist, HawkWatch, the National Phenology Network and the National Park Service. The outputs of analysis will be presented through visualizations that allow citizen scientists to understand how their data is being used and the potential effects of a changing climate on the subjects they study, while also providing key insights for park officials to plan the resources and tools needed to maintain park programs.

Looking ahead, the program plans include additional data sets from Earthwatch’s global research partners and create a data science sandbox allowing citizen scientists to gain the data science expertise they need to build their skills and interact with their data in a deeper way.

Executive Quote

Kathrin Winkler, Senior Vice President and Chief Sustainability Officer, EMC Corporation

“Researchers around the world often lack the ability to connect large global data sets to draw deeper, more meaningful insights. For many citizens, data science and climate science can be both complex and abstract. It is our hope that providing the tools and platforms needed to create highly interactive, accessible analysis and visualizations not only will lead to new insights on how climate change is impacting our world, but also make climate science and data science real, tangible and actionable for engaged citizens.”

About EMC

EMC Corporation is a global leader in enabling businesses and service providers to transform their operations and deliver IT as a service. Fundamental to this transformation is cloud computing. Through innovative products and services, EMC accelerates the journey to cloud computing, helping IT departments to store, manage, protect and analyze their most valuable asset — information — in a more agile, trusted and cost-efficient way. Additional information about EMC can be found at www.EMC.com.

About Earthwatch

Earthwatch works internationally with over 120 of the world’s leading scientists to develop citizen science programs that identify solutions to some of the world’s most pressing issues including the response of nature to climate change.

About Schoodic Institute

Schoodic Institute at Acadia National Park is a non-profit organization committed to guiding present and future generations to greater understanding and respect for nature by providing research and learning opportunities through its outstanding Acadia National Park setting, unique coastal Maine facilities and innovative partnership programs. Schoodic Institute is contributing to building the field of citizen science and serves as fiscal sponsor of the Citizen Science Association.

About Pivotal

Pivotal combines our cloud-native platform, developer tools, and unique methodology to help the world’s largest companies transform the way they build and run their most important applications. Our technology is used by Global 2000 companies to achieve strategic advantages in software development and IT operations.


Rita Manachi
Analyst Relations

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