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Machine Learning in Poverty Measurement

Posted: May, 11, 2021

By: Cheng Ren

According to The Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) from the United Nations, the first goal is to "end poverty in all its forms everywhere". However, a common method to measure poverty is census data or large sample research, which collects data from a large sample size. The cost for conducting these researches is even higher in low-income areas due to the scarce infrastructure (Blumenstock, 2016; Jean et al., 2016; Perez et al., 2019, McBride&Nichols, 2015).

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Handling Missing Data

Posted: May, 04, 2021

By: J. Brooks Jessup

I recently started working with a set of eviction data for a project on housing precarity at the Urban Displacement Project. As I began exploring the dataset, I was excited to find that it appeared to contain a wealth of historical data we could use to train a robust model for predicting eviction rates in urban neighborhoods. However, my initial excitement soon had to be scaled back when a standard check for missing data revealed that many of the observations lacked values for precisely the variable we aimed to predict.

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The Importance of Design Plans for Data Science

Posted: Apr, 20, 2021

By: Alex Stephenson

Since becoming a Data Fellow at the D-Lab, I have had the opportunity to assist many talented social scientists through the D-Lab’s Consulting service. A regular consulting request is to help with the research design for a new project. These requests are understandable. For empirical researchers, a high-quality research design makes or breaks a research project. In this post, I suggest a few benefits of writing a skeleton design plan before writing any code whatsoever.

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Machine Learning in Atmospheric Science

Posted: Apr, 20, 2021

By: Grazia Rovelli

Machine learning in atmospheric science

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Projects as a Learning Tool

Posted: Apr, 06, 2021

By: Emily Grabowski

Let’s say you’re new to programming, or maybe you’ve coded before but you’re tackling a new concept. You’ve read a blog post or taken a workshop, and have a general sense of what is going on. But how do you take this to the next level? One of my favorite ways to dive into a new technique is to simply try it out.

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Visuals for Everyone: An Exercise On The Importance of Intuitive Data Visualization

Posted: Mar, 30, 2021

By: Daphne Yang

A couple years ago, I took an undergraduate biostatistics course here at UC Berkeley and vividly remember one of the first discussion section activities on interpreting data and visualizations. From this activity, I learned about why, as data consumers, we must always be aware of not only what visualizations are really representing but also understanding where the data is really coming from. While this might seem obvious, this has been one of the most valuable lessons as an aspiring data scientist/enthusiast.

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Improving research transparency in the social sciences through pre-analysis plans

Posted: Mar, 23, 2021

By: Jordan Weiss

Openness, transparency, and reproducibility in research are critical to scientific progress.

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Manuscript Workflow with R Markdown and Git

Posted: Mar, 16, 2021

By: Lawrence Tello

As part of my Masters of Public Health program I needed to complete a capstone. Working on a manuscript is a lot of back and forth: You need to make edits, fix your words and figures, and sometimes re-work entire sections. If you are like me, the thought of doing this process over a long period of time in Word makes me nauseous. Two main issues that cause this nausea for me are:

  1. I frequently forget to make a record of my writing and often overwrite work 

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Covidence: A Game Changer For Systematic Reviews

Posted: Mar, 09, 2021

By: Lawrence Tello

If you are planning on conducting a systematic review consider using Covidence for your next project! Your UC Berkeley account gives you access to an unlimited number of reviews and citations per review, as well enhanced support. 

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Enjoy the Layover

Posted: Mar, 09, 2021

By: Frank Hidalgo

Intercontinental trips require multiple days of traveling, layovers, and more often than not, rerouting due to bad weather. While some may consider a storm to be a roadblock, others may take it as an opportunity to explore a new city and its culture. A year ago, a heavy storm hit the entire world; COVID-19 sent us into lockdown. Most of our activities were cancelled. We could not go to work, eat at restaurants, or gather in-person with our friends anymore. That forced us to take a step back and adjust to the new situation.

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