Get to know Alex Howe, GDI Fellow (Melbourne Branch)
We recently sat down with Alex Howe who has been promoted to the role of Fellow (Project Leader) at the Good Data Institute to hear about his background and experience with GDI!
Alex studied for a Bachelor of Commerce at the University of Melbourne and is currently studying for a Masters in Data Science at the University of New South Wales. He is currently a Manager in the customer strategy team at AGL Energy where he is on secondment. As a valued member of the GDI network and a graduate of the March 2022 GDI Data For Good Cohort, we are thrilled to promote Alex to the role of Fellow to kickstart the next chapter of his data for social good journey.
1. Tell us a little about your background. Where did you grow up and what did you want to do when you grew up?
I was born and raised in Melbourne. When I was young I dreamed of being a professional race car driver. I raced go karts competitively from 11-16 before my parents wisely directed to me to focus on my high school studies.
2. Where do you currently work and what does your role involve on a day to day basis?
I currently work at AGL Energy as a Manager in the Customer Strategy and Insights team. Day to day I work across a wide range of initiatives to drive the organic growth of the retail side of the business.
3. How did you hear about the Good Data Institute and what made you interested in getting involved?
I read about the Good Data Institute on LinkedIn. I am passionate about social impact and have volunteered to help not for profits achieve their strategic objectives. I also enjoy data driven problem solving. The Good Data Institute seemed like a great fit! 4. Tell us a little bit about your experiences at GDI so far! What types of projects have you worked on and what have you found most rewarding about them?
I’ve had an awesome time being a part of GDI to date! It’s been great to connect with like-minded individuals who keen to generate social impact using their data science and analytics skills. My favourite experience so far has been the GDI Hackathon where I worked with Rob Wall, Lydia Chen, Greissen Leslie and Richard Li to build a dashboard for Hui E! to visualise their survey data and help them draw out key insights to drive impact for New Zealand based not for profits!
5. What are you most excited about as you move into the Fellow role going forward? What types of NFPs and causes interest you most?
Broadly speaking, helping not for profits gain rich insights that drive positive impact towards the causes they target. The causes that interest me the most are animal welfare and rare cancers. Two causes close to my heart.
Next up, I am working on leading a GDI project along Akriti Sharma (GDI Fellow) for the Centre for New Data — a non-partisan NFP that is looking to use data to help reduce voter suppression in US elections. They do this by helping minimise wait times for voting. GDI will help develop tools to assist in the validation of polling location data and patterns of likely voting devices!
6. Lastly, what are your favourite hobbies? What’s your favourite way to spend a day off?
Outside of work and volunteering, I love to compete in sim-racing online, experience Melbourne’s vast range of eateries with friends, read (favourite topics include motorsport, behavioural economics, philosophy, politics) and play guitar.
If you are a data & analytics professional looking to make an impact and become part of a global community of people like you, applications for our next GDI Data For Good cohort are currently open with the program running over Oct, Nov and Dec 2022. This program serves as the gateway into the Good Data Institute community and consists of learning and development (L&D) events and a team based hackathon with a NFP partner. Sign up for our newsletter here to stay in the loop.
The Good Data Institute (established 2019) is a registered not-for-profit organisation (ABN: 6664087941) that aims to give not-for-profits access to data analytics (D&A) support & tools. Our mission is to be the bridge between the not-for-profit world and the world of data analytics practitioners wishing to do social good. Using D&A, we identify, share, and help implement the most effective means for growing NFP people, organisations, and their impact.