Training Programme on Data Science Applications for Sustainability

10th-12th July, 2017

Venue: TERI University, Plot No. 10, Institutional Area, Vasant Kunj, New Delhi

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About the Training Programme

With the concept of a digital world taking precedence, our lives are being incessantly mapped and recorded in the digital realm. This, among other things, has led to availability of plethora of data that needs to be analysed in order to discover hidden patterns that are far from random. This is done through the field of Data Science. There are several definitions of data science available. Data science is considered to be an amalgamation of statistics, computer science, and application in various sectors. Large datasets of spatial and temporal information are assembled and manipulated in order to improve the understanding and management of complex systems. At its core, data science involves assemblage, management, and analysis of large spatio-temporal datasets for their translation into information that can eventually be used by decision makers for policymaking. Although data science is used in different domains, such as marketing, management, natural resource management, climate change studies, finances, development economics, among many others, an understanding of connection between the field of data science and sustainability is still limited.

Both the field of sustainability and data science being fairly new fields, there are a limited amount of academic resources that have been written about synergy between the two topics. A few academicians and professionals, however, are already working in data science applications for sustainability. Keeping this in mind, there is a need to strengthen the knowledge base by conducting capacity-building training programmes. The application of data science on sustainability can be examined through the triple bottom line/pillars (environment, social, and economic) perspectives. Data science can be used for addressing not only issues of individual pillar of sustainability but also for integrating the three for the purpose of

Environmental Perspective

Environmental sustainability can be defined as maintaining qualities that are valued in the physical environment. In India—due to an exponential increase in population, increasing degradation, and depletion of natural resources along with an increased frequency of natural disasters—there is an immediate need to sustain ecosystem services (e.g., water cycle, water purification, soil protection, air quality etc), healthy urban environment, ecological communities, and physical resources (e.g., renewable and non-renewable resources, etc.). This requires an exploration and analysis of relevant datasets that could become a huge task as these are often collected by different agencies in different formats. Also, with the availability of plethora of earth-observation satellites, there is a huge dataset available to monitor earth resources. These different datasets can be integrated and analysed to investigate the hidden patterns to address various environmental issues. Therefore, we need to develop human resources that can mine these structured and unstructured datasets for purposes of sustainable management.

Social Perspective

Social sustainability involves a harmonious coexistence of human and natural communities, now and in the future. It focuses on an equitable distribution of resources both at the individual and community level. The most common data for addressing issues of social sustainability are based on surveys that are often quite messy, noisy, and unstructured. Moreover, social sustainability involves environmental data as well. Additionally, there is need of integration of different types of data from many different sources. This issue can be efficiently handled using concepts of data science.

Economic Perspective

Economic sustainability is often seen as a matter of intergenerational equity that focuses on equity with regard to jobs, education, healthcare, and prosperity. With a rise in population and technological progress, there is a rapid change in the production and consumption behaviour of societies leading to generation of complex data that requires analysis for an accurate economic-growth prediction. The use of data science can play an important role in promoting sustainable economic growth and enhances the resource base of the economy.

Decision makers at all stages are often baffled in taking the appropriate decisions as decision making processes are increasing becoming complex in an era where economic , social and environmental problems are tightly interwoven. The challenge arises as the skillsets and competencies required for economic analysis of environmental issues and problems fall short of the requirements. Most importantly, agencies, organizers, scholars, and other stakeholders entrusted to deal with such problems lack the practical skill sets required to handle large-structured and unstructured data sets for specific economic analysis and draw meaningful conclusions out of it. In this context, we at TERI University would like to conduct a training programme to bridge this capacity gap by providing not a theoretical understanding of data science and its role in sustainability, but by also offering a hands-on experience required for such analysis.

TERI University is a unique institution dedicated to the creation and pursuit of knowledge on sustainable development. It is a not-for-profit independent research institute recognized globally for its contribution to scientific and policy research in the realms of natural resources, energy, environment, and sustainable development. With a strong multidisciplinary focus in teaching and research, we conduct training programmes on a regular basis for students to professionals for diverse groups. The proposed training programme aims at instilling the core competencies of data science applications in achieving the goal towards sustainability. Since the programme aims at offering practical tools for the participants, a lot of emphasis is laid on hands-on exercises, group exercises, and simulation exercises supplemented through real-world case studies with the use of advanced software.



1st May, 2017


1st June, 2017

Training programme BEGINS

10th - 12th July, 2017


The objectives of the three-day residential course at TERI University are as follows:

  • To understand the application of data science and its linkages with the pillars of sustainability
  • To apply these techniques to live and practical cases through hands-on exercises of various forms of datasets
  • To get exposed to different kinds of software required for analysing various data by using case-specific tools and techniques

Expected Participants

The programme is aimed at bringing together a range of different stakeholders which are as follows:
- Faculty/researchers
- Analysts
- Private-sector consultants
- Masters and PhD students


Certificate of participation will be presented to all the registered participants at the end of the training.


The trainign programme aims to provide:

  • Overview and application of data science for environmental sustainability
  • Data science application for forest ecosystem
  • Data science application for social sustainability
  • Data science application for health care
  • Data science application for livelihoods
  • Data science application in economics
  • Synergizing three pillars of sustainability through data science


The registration fee includes the registration kit, study material in CD, tea/coffee, and lunch.


Registration on or before May 31, 2017

Registration after 31st May 2017

Postgraduate Students, Research Scholars

INR 3000

INR 3500

University College Teachers

INR 4000

INR 4500


INR 6000

INR 6500

Registration fee does not include TA/DA and accommodation for outstation participants. We can facilitate accommodation on request for outstation participants on a payment basis.


  • Dr Prateek Sharma

    Professor, TERI University, New Delhi

  • Dr Suresh Jain

    Professor, TERI University, New Delhi

  • Dr Abhay Kumar

    Executive Director of Lokashraya Foundation, New Delhi

  • Dr Anurag Agrawal

    Principal Scientist, CSIR Institute of Genomics & Integrative Biology (IGIB), New Delhi

  • Prof. K.R. Srivathsan

    Professor, IIT Bhubaneswar

  • Dr Rekha Krishnan

    Managing Partner, Water Energy Food Transitions (WEFT) Research, New Delhi

  • Mr. Joy Mustafi

    Principal Applied Scientist, Microsoft, Hyderabad

  • Dr Ashwini Chaitre

    Visiting Professor, ISB, Hyderabad

  • Professor Surendra Kumar

    Delhi School of Economics, Delhi

  • Dr. K. H. Rao

    ( Retired)  Group Director, Ocean Science Group NRSC/ISRO, Earth and Climate Science Area, NRSC, HyderabadDr. K. H. Rao, ( Retired)  Group Director, Ocean Science Group NRSC/ISRO, Earth and Climate Science Area, NRSC, Hyderabad


Dr Neeti Assistant Professor,
Department of Natural Resources TERI University

Dr Sukanya Das, Assistant Professor,
Department of Policy StudiesTERI

For further queries contact 011-71800222.

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Training Programme on Data Science Applications for Sustainability

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