NEW YORK, March 11, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Where are all the Data Scientists? They're in academia. And on a recent cold Wednesday night, they found out that cleantech entrepreneurs are very interested in them.
70 academics and 20 entrepreneurs packed the main room at the NYU Poly Incubator for a panel organized by Energy Infotech NYC and sponsored by About.com. Before the panel kicked off, there were two requests for a show of hands: Data Researchers interested in consulting work, then clean tech entrepreneurs looking for consultants. Lots of hands shot up in both cases. Academics and entrepreneurs eyed each other with happy surprise and then got down to the serious business of listening to the panel discuss how cleantech entrepreneurs and data researchers need each other.
The panel was a who's who of data scientists and start-up founders working in the New York cleantech scene – Dr. Jun Shimada, founder of ThinkEco, Emily Bjorklund, co-founder of Energy Solutions Forum, Tyler Tringas, co-founder of SolarList, and Dr. Mike Dewar, data scientist at the New York Times. The moderator, Dr. Jon Roberts, Director of Data Science at About.com, asked the panel questions he asked when making the transition from academia to industry: "Do hiring managers really care about LinkedIn?", "How important is subject matter expertise?", and "Are coding skills a requirement, and if so – what language?". The answers painted a picture of a recruiting world very different from academia.
Panelists said they often met new hires at Meetup events and expected researchers to be able to quickly adapt to the problems in the company. They agreed they were much more likely to initially hire a consultant for a trial engagement that could, if both parties expressed interest, turn into a full time position.
Conversation then turned to hackathons. Tyler Tringas felt, "A hackathon could easily be as much as 50% of a candidate's resume to me." For researchers, this painted a stark contrast to the hiring rituals of academia – where job applications take twelve months and the process hasn't changed in decades.
As the evening ended, the panel was already receiving emails of thanks, and requests to "do this again, soon". Energy Infotech NYC will host future events to help match-make data scientists with the many opportunities with cleantech start-ups.
The next Energy Infotech panel event, "David and Goliath: How the Little Guys Can Get the Big Companies to Buy", will help cleantech entrepreneurs trying sell products and/or services to large companies. It will take place Wednesday, March 19 at the Hodgson Russ law firm (1540 Broadway, 24th Fl) at 8 AM. To register, please visit www.energyinfotech.org.
If you'd like more information about this or the next event, or to schedule an interview with Barry Korn, President of Energy Infotech NYC, please call Lew Blaustein at 646/675.6656 or e-mail Lew at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Contact: Lew Blaustein
SOURCE Energy Infotech NYC