The Division of Data Sciences

The Division of Data Sciences stands alongside the University’s schools and colleges, working to bring together new initiatives in data-intensive discovery and education; advance the data revolution across disciplines; and equip students to serve as leaders, creators, change agents, and decisionmakers in a data-rich world.

The Division, established in 2017, is UC Berkeley’s strategic response to the burgeoning opportunities and demands of research and innovation as data increasingly touches every aspect of our lives and opens new vistas in the advance of knowledge. It originated in 2014 with a team of faculty charged with “rethinking at a fundamental level what every educated person must know about quantitative reasoning: how to effectively understand, process, and interpret information to inform decisions in their professional and personal lives and as citizens of the world in the 21st century.”

What emerged was a vision to build on Berkeley’s strengths across disciplines and connect them throughout campus to advance an innovative, integrated approach to data science research, teaching, and public impact. This collaborative design reflects the interdisciplinary nature of Data Science, or processing, managing, and drawing conclusions from data to gain understanding in virtually any domain, from evolutionary genetics to the design of smart cities. 

Among the defining features of data science at Berkeley:

Inclusion: Hundreds of faculty and students from a variety of backgrounds contribute to, inform, and advance data science curricula and research.

Social Consciousness: Embedded throughout our data science research and education is consideration of the social and human contexts and ethical implications of the ways in which data are gathered and put to use.

Empowerment: Through education, research, mentoring, and leadership opportunities, we equip students with the skills and experiences they need to become engaged and effective leaders and decisionmakers in a rapidly transforming, data-abundant world.

Impact: We leverage data and domain expertise to inform decisions and actions to address complex problems confronting government, business, and society.