REDWOOD CITY, Calif., Oct. 13, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Omidyar Network announced today its latest $2 million investment in DataKind, the New York City-based nonprofit that connects data science and social sector experts to address critical humanitarian problems around the world including education, poverty, health, human rights, and the environment.
Omidyar Network's investment comes as mission-driven organizations continue to face a growing challenge in today's digital world—the lack of resources to analyze and act on the massive amounts of valuable data at their fingertips. From using satellite imagery and remote sensing data to prevent the spread of crop diseases in Ethiopia to helping American Red Cross target its smoke alarm installation campaigns to communities in need, DataKind has rallied its global community of over 12,000 data science volunteers and social innovators to deliver over $14 million in pro bono services to organizations worldwide. Omidyar Network has supported DataKind since 2014, and this latest investment over the next three years will help the organization to scale its services, driving greater collaboration between governments, nonprofits, and technologists. Additionally, the firm's support will enable DataKind to test new approaches using predictive analytics, providing a better understanding of data's potential to predict and identify issues of financial transparency and fiscal governance.
"Omidyar Network is proud to support DataKind's innovative model to engage data scientists in addressing urgent issues that impact the lives of millions of people," says Stacy Donohue, investment partner at Omidyar Network. "DataKind has been a pioneer in the emerging field of data science for good by mobilizing data scientists via a tiered engagement model and global chapters in five countries. From weekend-long DataDives to short-term DataCorps projects to in-house projects with DataKind Labs, DataKind's volunteers and staff are poised to create substantial impact on issues facing governments and nonprofits globally."
As a part of Omidyar Network's Governance & Citizen Engagement initiative, which seeks to help create stronger and more open societies by increasing government responsiveness and citizen participation, DataKind also provides valuable insights to the firm's portfolio of companies and organizations focused on improving the relationship between citizens and their governments.
"Omidyar Network's dedication to data-driven social impact and creative collaboration continues to make them an essential partner in propelling DataKind forward," says Jake Porway, founder and executive director of DataKind. "While growth capital is certainly needed for us to effectively scale, it's the access to leading social innovators around the global that makes our partnership with Omidyar Network so valuable—and it's what will truly help us make data science and AI mainstream in the social sector."
About Omidyar Network
Omidyar Network is a philanthropic investment firm dedicated to harnessing the power of markets to create opportunity for people to improve their lives. Established in 2004 by eBay founder Pierre Omidyar and his wife Pam, the organization invests in and helps scale innovative organizations to catalyze economic and social change. Omidyar Network has committed more than$1 billion to for-profit companies and nonprofit organizations that foster economic advancement and encourage individual participation across multiple initiatives, including Consumer Internet & Mobile, Education, Financial Inclusion, Governance & Citizen Engagement, and Property Rights. To learn more, visit www.omidyar.com, and follow on Twitter @omidyarnetwork #PositiveReturns.
DataKind harnesses the power of data science in the service of humanity by engaging data science and social sector experts on projects addressing critical humanitarian problems and by leading the conversation about how data science can be applied to solve the world's biggest challenges. Launched in 2011, DataKind leads a community of passionate data scientists, visionary partners and mission-driven organizations with the talent, commitment and energy to use data science in the service of humanity. DataKind is headquartered in New York City and has Chapters in Bangalore, Dublin, San Francisco, Singapore, the UK and Washington, D.C. More information on DataKind, our programs and our partners can be found on our website: www.datakind.org