2021: A Year in Review

Taking a moment to reflect back on Data Clinic’s year in data- and tech-for-good

It’s hard to believe another year has flown by. Despite the ongoing pandemic, our team continues to adapt and find new ways to support mission-driven organizations, collaborate with peers, and contribute to learning communities. Overall, it was a great year thanks to the hard work and dedication of our partners, volunteers, and colleagues. Read on for a brief look back at some of our 2021 highlights as we gear up for another wonderful year of data and tech for social good.

Open source

  • We released an interview library that allows the developer to have greater flexibility and control in setting up data collection survey tools, and includes several accessibility features for respondents with lower literacy levels.
  • We updated our MTA subway repository with more up-to-date graphs of accessible stations
  • We improved our analysis on crowding in the NYC subway during the pandemic to see how foot traffic compared to the previous year
A sample heat map of crowding at NYC Subway stations during COVID


  • We collaborated with the COVID-19 in Africa Data Science team to build a Africa-focused dashboard that shows the latest stats for COVID on the continent and facilitates access to the team’s insights
  • In partnership with Plymouth Marine Laboratory, we released an open source package for detecting macro plastics in the ocean using satellite imagery
  • We wrapped two partnerships with the New York Stem Cell Foundation Research Institute to support the optimization of work related to the production of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs)
  • We supported Nashville Metro Arts in uncovering data-driven insights on equitable access to their varied arts programming across the county
  • We kicked off a partnership with Aalborg University, one of data.org’s Inclusive Growth and Recovery Challenge winners, to create regions within Denmark that allow for more informative and user-friendly data sharing with decision-makers
  • As part of one of our internal Hack Days, we built a proof-of-concept version of an interactive map for Urban Indigenous Collective’s Missing and Murdered Indigenous Peoples Policy Tracker so users could have a visual alternative for exploring their database
Ghost Ballet for the East Bank Machineworks in Nashville. Artist: Alice Aycock, Photographer: Gary Layda


  • We kicked off our new workshop series: Good with Numbers. These free, small-format workshops aim to equip nonprofits with actionable tips to build data strategies and make data more valuable for their teams. Follow us on Eventbrite to be alerted to new sessions
  • We also launched our free virtual open office hours series, in which nonprofits can stop by without an appointment to pose specific data challenges to Data Clinic staff for technical and/or strategic guidance. Follow us on Eventbrite to be alerted to new sessions

Conferences and media

Data Clinic Director Rachael Weiss Riley (bottom left) at the Social Innovation Summit

Peer collaboration

  • Alongside all our peers in the Tech for Good Symposium, we are eager to share the Data and Tech for Good landscape database. This is a living document categorizing and detailing member companies’ data- and tech-for-good initiatives, alongside contact information to learn more. We hope this resource will inspire learnings, new initiatives, and collaboration both across the for-profit sector, and between the for-profit and social impact sector.

Our teams are already hard at work on some exciting projects for 2022, and we look forward to sharing more with you. If you’re interested in collaborating with us on a partnership, please fill out this interest form, and if you’d like to contribute to any of our open source projects, please check out our repos on GitHub. For all other questions or ideas, you can reach us at dataclinic@twosigma.com.

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This article is not an endorsement by Two Sigma of the papers discussed, their viewpoints or the companies discussed. The views expressed above reflect those of the authors and are not necessarily the views of Two Sigma Investments, LP or any of its affiliates (collectively, “Two Sigma”). The information presented above is only for informational and educational purposes and is not an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any securities or other instruments. Additionally, the above information is not intended to provide, and should not be relied upon for investment, accounting, legal or tax advice. Two Sigma makes no representations, express or implied, regarding the accuracy or completeness of this information, and the reader accepts all risks in relying on the above information for any purpose whatsoever. Click here for other important disclaimers and disclosures.