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Blog entry by Nathan Piccini

6 Data Science Conferences to Attend in North America

6 Data Science Conferences to Attend in North America

North America (USA and Canada) has a crazy amount of data science conferences to choose from. Here are 6 conferences you should consider attending.

There is an abundance of events to attend so make sure to do your homework. I've also included resources at the end of the article if you'd like to look at other options.

Maybe North America isn't the region you're interested in? Don't worry, I've also written about conferences to attend in other regions of the world:

  • Asia
  • Europe (in progress)
  • Latin and South America (in progress)
  • Middle East and Africa (in progress)

1) The Data Science Conference

Reverberating from my blog post on data science conferences to attend in 2020, I would highly suggest attending The Data Science Conference.

Vendor free, sponsor free, and recruiter free, this conference isn't trying to sell you anything. Organizers are just trying to bring together the best data science minds to help attendees learn and grow the field. Obvously, if you're attending a conference to network you should pass on this event, but if you want to learn in a distraction free enviornment you should highly consider attending.

Date: May 14-15, 2020

Location: Chicago

VenueGleacher Center

2) Women in Analytics

This conference was also featured in my list for 2020, so it's no surprise that I also included it here.

Women in Analyics (WIA) is all about providing "visibility to the women making an impact in the analytics space and provide a platform for them to lead the conversations around the advancements of analytical research, development, and application,". The conferencce has grown every year since it's founding in 2016, now taking 3 days to accomodate all the speakers. People of all genders are welcome to join.

Date: June 3-5, 2020

Location: Columbus, OH, USA

VenueGreater Columbus Convention Center

3) TDWI Las Vegas

What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas...Okay that's completely untrue because you're going to take away a lot from Transforming Data With Intelligence (TDWI) in Las Vegas.

TDWI is one of the leading data science conferences in North America. Even if you have to travel, you should consider attending. TDWI prides itself in offering full and half-day courses,rather than the traditional 45 - 60 minute sessions, and that's what really sets this conference apart for me. You actually get time to pick the brain of the instructor rather than running through a session and quickly forgetting what it was about because the next one has already started.

TDWI also has a Sell Your Boss template to help you get those work days off for professional developement.

Date: February 9-14, 2020

Location: Las Vegas

VenueCaesars Palace

4) Predictive Analytics World (PAW) Las Vegas

PAW typically comes to Las Vegas every year and doesn't really need much explaining. The conference is one of the leaders in data science, machine learning, and AI coverage and also one of the most widely attended. Formerly known as Mega-Paw and being rebranded as Machine Learning Week, you can expect the same great conference.

Machine Learning Week is technically 5 conferences and 10 workshops with 160 speakers and 150+ sessions packed into 1 week. They sell passes for all 5 days or for as little as 2. It depends on what you want to get out of the week. Business, Healthcare, Finance, Industry 4.0 (IoT), and Deep Learning are the five conferences taking place during the week.

Keynotes from GM, Lyft, Google, Keenesaw State University, Manulife, and Fidelity Investments highlight the list of speakers at ML Week. If you can't attend all 5 days, make sure to find the conference that most applies to your industry (or future industry)
to get the most out of it.

Date: May 31 - June 4, 2020

Location: Las Vegas

VenueCaesars Palace

5) ODSC East 2020

The Open Data Science Conference (ODSC) is one of the best around the world. It's 5 days of learning, networking, developing, and building that leaves you exhausted at the end of each day. It includes 8 focus areas spread across 5 days, with 3 of those days strictly for training.

The best conferences don't earn their title without incredible content. Some of the speakers at ODSC East are from some of the most renowned universities and organizations. Google, Harvard Medical School, Bloomberg, and MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab all have representatives speaking/instructing during the conference. The most difficult part of attending will be choosing who's talk you should attend. That would require a whole different blog post, so I won't get into it.

Date: April 13-17, 2020

Location: Boston, MA, USA

VenueBoston Hynes Convention Center

6) Big Data and Analytics Summit Canada

What I love about the Big Data and Analytics Summit is that it's not as big as some of the conferences previously mentioned. It won't be as choatic, you won't feel overwelmed, and you'll get more networking time with speakers and peers.

The other great thing is the list of speakers still come from reputable companies in the field. Representatives from McDonalds, Coca-Cola, UPS, and Sephora will all be in attendance at the 2020 event. One speaker that I would actually like to see is 
Sunanda Parthasarthy, Associate Director Data Science & Algorithms at Wayfair. Sunanda is joined by Eugene Wen and Niraj Krishna for a panel titled Secure Buy-in for your Big Data Initiatives in a Data-Driven Culture. They'll be giving tips on visualizations, value propositions, and talking about their own personal experience.

This conference looks to give you the real-world outlook of big data and data-driven cultures.

Date: February 12-13, 2020

Location: Toronto, ON

Venue: Hyatt Regency Toronto Hotel

Other Conference Resources

Also, If you want to learn data science for professional developement without all the distractions brought by a conference, consider attending a data science bootcamp taught by
Data Science Dojo.

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