Jason Jackson on Introduction to Python for Social Scientists

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Dr. Jason Jackson is an independent scientist and director of Jackson Research Institute. He recently completed the SAGE Campus “Introduction to Python for Social Scientists” course and has shared his insight on the role that data science plays in the future research, and how he to intends to use his new Python skills. This post originally appeared on the SAGE Campus blog.

At Jackson Research Institute, we research topics to include aspects of information overload, senior leadership decision-making, cognition, business, and military veterans re-entering the corporate workforce. Recently, I was asked to become editor-in-chief of a new double-blind peer reviewed research journal, IJRLEDM, the International Journal of Responsible Leadership and Ethical Decision-Making, via IGI Global publishing. I serve as a consultant to industry, and work as a data scientist. I’m full-time faculty at a university, and lead their supply chain management degree program.

Data science is core to the future. It is the gateway to internet 3.0 and what businesses need for the present and future, even if they do not know it at this time. The modern internet started as basically read-only. Then it progressed to read-write web. Now we are learning to capture and perform analysis on data across open sources on top of the internet, creating something new and significantly more powerful. This is very useful to social scientists, consultants, and teachers of future business leaders. This is an area of deep life-long learning.

The SAGE course Introduction to Python for Social Scientists was exactly what I have been looking for as an opportunity to strengthen my skills in a targeted area, where I can then put that knowledge to immediate use in multiple areas of responsibility. Dr. Rob Mastrodomenico is an international expert in data science and Python. It was an important opportunity to learn from him online, and I look forward to learning more during future advanced courses, using Python to accomplish organizational goals.

Learning Python, and applying the programming language to data science is the start of a new work effort. I had explored other computer programming languages and they were not aligned to my goals, or had some missing attributes I was seeking. Python is the perfect fit for social scientists to be able to take command of their data and quickly find new unique insights. After taking this course, I can see new opportunities for both my research and work. It is useful from supply chain management to helping military veterans via research programs. One of my next steps will be to integrate Python with geographical information systems (GIS) to explore data on near real-time maps as a method of supporting complex leadership decision-making.

My long-term goal remains to help others. To truly help others, people and organizations need a stable platform. This means clean data, reliable data sources, and keen insights, focused towards organizational leadership decision-making. Data science methods are important “tools in the toolbox” towards supporting organizations and leaders; helping ensure that stable platform. I can see leveraging these new skills in this manner, and also see it prompting further learning, such as GIS integration.

The really interesting thing about all of this is the more you learn, the more you become aware there is even more to continue learning!

If you’d like to connect with Jackson you can find his LinkedIn profile here

To learn more about the Introduction to Python for Social Scientists course here.

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