Head of Data Science
Talk title: The Evolution of Data Science Work at Airbnb
In my past five years at Airbnb, interest in data science as a discipline has quadrupled (according to Google Trends). It is exciting to be part of such a rapidly-evolving field. Alongside shifts in the larger industry, the Airbnb data science team has rapidly evolved to stay in step with Airbnb’s hypergrowth, applying increasingly sophisticated techniques and methods to unlock scale. This talk will describe the evolution of data science work at Airbnb, including what is cutting edge in the three tracks of work we pursue: algorithms, analytics, and inference.
As the leader of Airbnb's Data team, Elena Grewald is responsible for driving the strategy for how Airbnb uses data for decision making and to infuse products and processes with algorithms. She started as one of the first data scientists at the company, where her initial work set up frameworks for understanding the impact of company initiatives - from the operations teams to the product teams. Her mission is to create a data-driven culture of experimentation at the company.
Prior to Airbnb, Elena received a Ph.D. in Education and an M.A. in Economics from Stanford University. Her dissertation used advanced statistical modeling to predict friendships in schools and analyzed how those friendships impacted the likelihood a lower income student enrolled in college. She received the Stanford Interdisciplinary Graduate Fellowship for this work. Originally from New Haven, Connecticut, she received a B.A. from Yale University studying Ethics, Politics, and Economics.
Chief Data Scientist
UN Global Pulse
School of Information, University of Michigan