The interim director for a new data science center at UW-Madison says the wealth of information pouring from various industries represents both a challenge and an opportunity for researchers.

The American Family Insurance Data Science Institute was announced in April, when the Madison insurer announced it would put $20 million into data science initiatives at UW-Madison. Half of that is going toward research over the next 10 years, while the other $10 million established the new institute.

Brian Yandell, a professor of biometry, statistics and horticulture, is serving as the interim director.

“What’s been happening is, the amount of data that people are grappling with has mushroomed,” he told “That creates challenges, bottlenecks, in how long it takes to do things, and where you put things.”

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