Women in Data Science @ Penn Conference 2021


The University of Pennsylvania was proud to host the second annual (first virtual) Women in Data Science (WiDS) @ Penn Conference on February 8-12, 2021. Over the course of the week, nearly 500 registrants had access to academic and industry talks, live speaker Q&A sessions, and networking opportunities in our virtual Gather.Town conference space.

This year’s theme – This is What a Data Scientist Looks Like – emphasized the depth, breadth, and diversity of data science, both in subject matter and personnel. A celebrated interdisciplinary event, WiDS @ Penn welcomed academic and industry speakers from across the data science landscape.

Hosted By

Analytics at Wharton logo
Wharton Customer Analytics logo
Penn Engineering logo
Wharton Statistics and Data Science logo

These Are What Data Scientists Look Like

Supporting the Next Generation of Women in Data Science

The WiDS @ Penn Committee is dedicated to creating equitable opportunities to educate the next generation of female data scientists and analytics leaders. As a part of this commitment, we donated all 2021 registration fees to the Wharton Data Science Academy scholarship fund. We are thrilled to announce that we raised $4,150 to support need-based scholarships for female high school students.

These scholarships will enable students, regardless of their background, to participate in summer courses at The Wharton School to expose young talent to the field of data science and analytics.

WiDS By The Numbers

Scholarship Raised for the Wharton Data Science Academy

WiDS Day 1: Keynote

Kate Johnson, WG’94

Microsoft US

After welcoming remarks from deans Erika James (The Wharton School) and Vijay Kumar (Penn Engineering), attendees heard an inspiring talk from keynote speaker Kate Johnson, WG’94, President of Microsoft US, who spoke about the importance of technology as a change agent for inclusion. Following her talk, Kate answered questions from attendees, which was moderated by Mary Purk, Executive Director of Wharton Customer Analytics and AI for Business.

Welcoming Remarks

Erika James

The Wharton School

Vijay Kumar

Penn Engineering

WiDS Day 2: Speaker Sessions

Data Science in Radiology
Imaging Informatics

Tessa Cook

Assistant Professor of Radiology
Perelman School of Medicine

Social Network
Dependence and
the Replication Crisis

Betsy Ogburn

Associate Professor of Biostatistics
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

WiDS Day 3: Industry Panel

Sponsored by Wharton Women in Business

Christine Cox

Vice President Data and Analytics for IKEA Digital
IKEA Group


Didi Huang

Director of Data Science (Business Opportunities)

Barkha Saxena

Chief Data Officer

WiDS Day 4: Speaker Sessions

The Influence of Automated Accounts in the Spread of Information on Social Media

Sandra González-Bailón

Associate Professor of Communication
Annenberg School for Communication

How Humans Build Models of the World

Danielle Bassett

J Peter Skirkanich Professor, Associate Prof of Bioengineering
University of Pennsylvania

WiDS Day 5: Student Speaker Sessions

Comcast Customer Analysis

Ashley Clarke

University of Pennsylvania

COVID-19 Impact on Counties with Different Social-Economical Characteristics

Katherine Lin

Byram Hills High School

Equalmodel: A Post-Processing Algorithm for Bias Reduction in Big Data Analytics

Brian Handen, Hyewon Lee, Margaret Ji, Tashweena Heeramun and Trishla Pokharna

University of Pennsylvania

Predicting Academic Success of Masters Students Using Application Data

Karen Shen

University of Pennsylvania

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