Big Data has a reputation for being creepy; the domain of “Big Business” and “Big Government”. At best it’s the driver of relentless advertising, uniquely targeted and eerily reminiscent of our most recent internet searches.
At worst it heralds the Orwellian prophecy: Big Brother is watching you. Recent revelations by Edward Snowden have only fuelled suspicions that our data is being used in ways we don’t really comprehend and by people we don’t even know.
Yet Big Data could be one of the greatest tools we’ve ever had to drive economic, social and environmental sustainability.