“No one ever made a decision because of a number. They need a story,” explained Nobel Laureate Daniel Kahneman. Telling stories, while remaining true to the data, is a defining challenge of this century. Narratives are persuasive but not objective; numbers are often objective but not persuasive. For science to provide the broadest beneficial impact to society, its findings need to be communicated with both scientific integrity and authentic empathy.
D3M@Tufts — sponsored by the US National Science Foundation Research Traineeship (NRT) award — educates two types of Data Professionals. Policy-Savvy Data Experts from STEM discipline and Data-Proficient Decision Makers from non-STEM discipline who synthesize numbers and narratives to design and implement data-driven solutions that are technically efficient and contextually appropriate. Two academic pathways are shown on how students from the D3M@Tufts program become Data Professionals receiving their disciplinary degree and a D3M@Tufts Certificate without prolonging their time for graduation with a focus on three overarching ideas: