NYU Center for Data Science

NYU Center for Data Science

The NYU Center for Data Science (CDS) is a university-wide initiative that was established to foster research and education in data science. It is interdisciplinary and cross-school, with participation by faculty from many NYU units. The CDS brings together computer scientists and domain scientists with complex data science problems to capitalize on common interests, develop and apply computational methods to solve real problems, and build shared resources that can benefit research groups at NYU and worldwide, and consequently help advance data-driven scientific discovery.

The Center’s faculty and scientists are established experts in the field of data science. They have diverse backgrounds, coming from multiple disciplines within the physical, life and social sciences, as well as from engineering and computer science, bringing expertise in computational techniques, including data management, visualization and machine learning. CDS also has an educational mission. It runs a two-year M.S. program in Data Science, one of the first in the USA, and will start a Ph.D. program in 2016. Our program is high selective, and the incoming class for Fall 2015 is composed of 65 students out of an application pool of nearly 900 prospective students.

CDS is also the home of the Moore-Sloan Data Science Environment at NYU. This effort has injected valuable research resources and allowed the center to expand through the hiring of research fellows, engineers, and post-doctoral researchers. It has also supported tutorials, workshops, and seminars, which have been deployed to build a research community from many NYU units (FAS, Engineering, Stern, Steinhardt, Medical, Courant) who see the CDS as one of their intellectual homes.

Where is CDS?

CDS is currently housed in temporary space at 726 Broadway, in Manhattan. It will move to its permanent location, the Forbes Building on 5th avenue, to be completed in Spring 2016. The new space was designed to have open floor plans and flexible layouts that foster collaboration and discussion. It includes a combination of individual workspaces, meeting rooms, interaction spaces, and a lecture area.

Who works there?

CDS has nine associated faculty, 6 Moore-Sloan Fellows, a number of postdoctoral researchers, 3 research engineers, nearly 100 MS students, and a constant stream of visiting scholars. Students, supervised by faculty and research engineers, work in interdisciplinary projects applying data science methods to address problems in different scientific domains. There are also three full-time staff members at CDS. CDS has been giving 9 new tenure-track lines, which are being used to hire top faculty. So far, we have hired four new faculty members.

What happens at CDS?

CDS runs interdisciplinary activities that range from colloquia and seminars to workshops and hacking events. It is developing a software engineering effort that supports open-source data science software but also provides direct support to scientific teams around the University.

Who runs CDS?

Professor Foster Provost is the Interim Director of CDS and Roy Lowrance, PhD, is the Managing Director. The three core faculty members and ten associated faculty members currently serve as voting members in faculty matters, including faculty hiring for CDS lines. Professor Juliana Freire is the Executive Director of the NYU Moore-Sloan Data Science Environment.

How does CDS interact with other Data Science initiatives at NYU?

CDS casts a wide net at the university with associated and affiliated faculty coming from many areas throughout the university. We believe CDS faculty are members of essentially any major effort in Data Science at the University, including CUSP, which is the other major Data Science initiative at NYU.

How is CDS funded?

The CDS was established in 2013 by NYU’s Provost David Mclaughlin. It supported the creation of nine new faculty lines to be filled in conjunction with other NYU units, and custom-designed space to be created in the former Forbes building at 60 Fifth Avenue. One of the first activities of the center was the creation of a new M.S. in Data Science, which has generated strong student demand, and has been able to achieve a positive surplus quite quickly. Also in 2013, CDS joined University of Washington and UC Berkeley in receiving a 5-year $12.5 million award from the Gordon and Betty Moore and Alfred P. Sloan Foundations. All this has enabled CDS to ramp up quite quickly.

More questions? Contact the CDS staff at cds.nyu.edu/contact-us.