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  • Congratulations to the Floodsense team, whose research on “FloodNet.nyc: Street-level Flood Sensing and Data Sharing for Urban Resilience” was named the MetroLab Innovation of the Month! MetroLab spoke with Andrea Silverman, Brett Branco, Charlie Mydlarz, Elizabeth Henaff, Ricardo Toledo-Crow and Tega Brain about the project, which aims to monitor and record frequent, hyperlocal street-level floods in New York City.
  • Congratulations to Professor Debra Laefer and NYU Wagner Professor Emerita Rae Zimmerman, who are awardees of the Civic Innovation Challenge, a national competition to drive research and collaborative action in urban resiliency and smart and connected communities! Their research on “Unification for Underground Resilience Measures (UNUM),” co-led with Wendy Dorf and Alan Leidner from NYC’s Geospatial Information System and Mapping Organization (GISMO), aims to bolster the ability of first New York City and, ultimately, of cities nationwide to prepare for and respond to crises and disasters by making critical information on community infrastructure robust, open, transparent, and easy for key stakeholders to share and act upon.
  • Professor Debra Laefer will co-chair the 3D GeoInfo 2021 Conference on October 11-14th, a 4-day virtual event. The conference offers an interdisciplinary forum for researchers and practitioners from academia, industry, and government to discuss and exchange advances in the field of 3D geo-information. There will also be a virtual job fair and poster sessions, as well as local networking opportunities in select hub cities around the world.
  • In a new viewpoint on “The Transformation of Patient-Clinician Relationships with AI-based Medical Advice,” published in the Communications of the ACM, Professor Oded Nov, Institute Professor Maurizio Porfiri, Assistant Professor J.R. Rizzo, and faculty members from NYU Langone discuss how AI-based medical advice is transforming the patient-clinician relationship. The researchers argue that “Bring Your Own Algorithm” (BYOA) is changing the patient-clinician relationship and the nature of expert work in healthcare, and better patient-clinician-information-interpretation relationships can be facilitated with solutions that integrate technological and organizational perspectives.


  • Game on! – Alum Jeffrey Pawlick and Professor Quanyan Zhu team up to improve cybersecurity with game theory (NYU Tandon Newsroom).
  • Why are reports of sexual assault delayed? – features a new paper on “Understanding spatial patterns in rape reporting delays” by Associate Professor Daniel B. Neill, Visiting PhD Student Konstantin Klemmer, and Stephen A. Jarvis (Cosmos Magazine).


  • Earn your Master’s in Applied Urban Science and Informatics! It’s not too late to apply for Fall 2021 – learn more about our programs in Urban Informatics on our website or start your application here.


  • Assistant Professor S. Farokh Atashzar has two workshop proposals accepted at the IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA) 2021:
    • Mahdi Tavakoli, S. Farokh Atashzar, Kaspar Althoefer, Paolo Fiorini, “Impact of COVID-19 on Medical Robotics and Wearables Research: Learning from the Past and Strategizing for the Future,” IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA) ICRA 2021.
    • Farshid Alambeigi, S. Farokh Atashzar, Mohsen Khadem, Fanny Ficuciello, “Holistic Integration of Design, Sensing, and Intelligence in Dexterous Medical Robotic Systems,”  IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA) ICRA 2021.
  • Thudi, S. F. Atashzar, “Discrete Windowed-Energy Variable Structure Passivity Signature Control for Physical Human-(Tele)Robot Interaction,” IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters.

Open Data Week

Join members of the CUSP community for NYC’s Open Data Week, running now through March 14th! Open Data Week is a week-long festival of community-driven events organized and produced by the NYC Mayor’s Office of Data Analytics and BetaNYC. This year’s events include:

Who’s In? Barriers to Participation in NYC Open Data – Wednesday March 10th, 6:30 to 8pm

  • Led by Research Assistant Professor Graham Dove
  • What does the NYC Open Data community look like? And what does it take to be a member? Conversely, who might currently be excluded? What are the barriers to their participation? And what can be done to bring these barriers down? In this moderated forum we will discuss participation in NYC Open Data, investigate new places we might want to take it, and ask how to reach these desired goals.

Block Party: A Platform to Explore NYC Community Board Meetings – Thursday, March 11th, 11:00 to 11:45 am

  • Led by CUSP Alum Sarah Sachs & MS 2021 Candidate Brandon Pachuca
  • This interactive showcase will welcome you to block party as we dive into the public archive of Community Board meetings and explore what is discussed throughout New York City at a local level.

NYC Planning’s Data Engineering team’s year in review: highlighting new tools and products – Friday, March 12th, 12:30 to 1:45 pm

  • Led by CUSP alum and Adjunct Professor Amanda Doyle and CUSP alum Baiyue Cao
  • During this presentation NYC Planning’s Data Engineering team will share some of the products we worked on in the past year and demonstrate how they improved access to data and data quality. The presentation will be divided into three parts: new tools and processes, new projects and products, and general updates. First, we’ll share some processes we’ve built including workflows for extracting and staging input datasets, and how we’ve employed new tools, such as GitHub Actions for building products. Next, we’ll give an overview of new public data products, such as the DCP Housing Database, and highlight work we did to improve data quality in other interdivisional projects. Finally, we’ll share a few team updates including the status of PLUTO.

Living with Water: Using Qualitative and Quantitative Data on Flooding to Engage with Communities and Agencies – Friday, March 12th, 1:00 to 1:40 pm

  • Panel includes Assistant Professor Andrea Silverman, Research Assistant Professor Charlie Mydlarz and Assistant Professor Elizabeth Henaff.
  • Members of the Mayor’s Office of Resiliency, Mayor’s Office of the CTO, the City University of New York, and New York University will come together to discuss their work on flood monitoring, ranging from programs that rely on resident reporting to sensor-based, real-time monitoring. The panel will touch on the different approaches to data collection, how data is shared, and how to effectively work with and for communities.

Analyzing NYC’s 311 Street Flooding Complaints from 2010 to 2020 – Friday, March 12th, 2:00 to 3:00 pm

  • Led by CUSP alum Mark Bauer
  • Flooding poses a serious threat to coastal cities all around the world, and New York City is no exception. Hurricane Sandy in 2012 devastated the area, with many communities still suffering from its effects or unable to fully recover. What can citizen science data tell us about where flooding occurs and how it is changing over time? Additionally, how can this data potentially play a role in how New York City prepares and ultimately mitigates flooding in the future? In this virtual talk, Mark will explore NYC’s 311 street flooding complaints data.

Understanding and Addressing Algorithmic Bias in Hiring – Friday, March 12th, 5:00 to 7:00 pm

  • Led by Julia Stoyanovich, Co-Founder/Director, Center for Responsible AI at NYU Tandon
  • This online session is designed to generate insight into algorithmic bias in employment assessment software tools (aka hiring). Presenters and attendees will discuss through chat and submitted Q&As. The session is geared towards anyone interested in the social context of current tools, employment and equity policies, compliance, and research on impacts. Presentation will synthesize larger ethical questions with the practical technicalities of how these systems dys/function.

March Events