Data(ism)

Back in 2013, David Brooks wrote in the New York Times (link):


If you asked me to describe the rising philosophy of the day, I’d say it is data-ism. We now have the ability to gather huge amounts of data. This ability seems to carry with it certain cultural assumptions — that everything that can be measured should be measured; that data is a transparent and reliable lens that allows us to filter out emotionalism and ideology; that data will help us do remarkable things — like foretell the future.

David’s work appeared in an article by Oleksii Kharkovyna (link) in which he looked at ‘dataism’. In the article, Oleskii observed “dataism began as a neutral scientific theory but is now mutating into a religion that claims to determine right and wrong”.

Oleskii’s post led me to look more carefully at some data ideas. I have created a Citationsy list of my reading (link). The readings encouraged me to think about the volume, velocity and variety of data and how organisations, particularly in sport, are dealing with this.

Jim Harris makes some very important points in his 2012 post. I paid particular attention to:


Our organizations have been compulsively hoarding data for a long time. And with silos replicating data as well as new data, and new types of data being created and stored on a daily basis, managing all of the data is not only becoming impractical, but because we are too busy with the activity of trying to manage all of it, we are hoarding countless bytes of data without evaluating data usage, gathering data requirements, or planning for data archival

We do need to contemplate gathering, evaluating and storing as we become awash in data. David Slemen has discussed this in his look at the role of Director of Strategy and Analytics in football (link).

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