Sean Barberie

My interest in drones flourished during my time as a graduate student at University of Alaska Fairbanks. While there I worked for the Alaska Center for Unmanned Aircraft Systems Integration, one of the 6 Federal Aviation Administration-authorized drone test sites in the nation. In my drone work, I’ve discovered that there are some real and interesting challenges that needs to be met in order to make drones useful and cost-effective for real-world applications. To this end, I continue working with drones and drone data-products. My vision is to create an accessible, quality assured, and cost-effective ecosystem for generating and using drone data.

Data Science
Since long before I entered college I have been interested in Data Science, I just didn’t always know that the field had a name. I am a firm believer that through data-driven decision making and good visualizations, we can empower business, science, and government to make a bigger impact. I am also strongly interested in how injecting data science methods into the Earth Sciences can help grow that field. It is in the hopes of furthering this possibility that I joined the ESIP Federation (Earth Science Information Partners), where they share my enthusiasm for empowering the Earth Sciences by integrating more techniques and methods from data science and programming.

If you really want to improve how people live, you need to give them something they can integrate into their daily lives easily, comfortably, and without adding a new stressor to their day. This is where I believe Design plays into data science. Through good design, you can give people tools that they will be happy to use, and that are more easily integrated into their decision-making process. Although less philosophically-based, I’ve also always enjoyed doing web design, and I think that there is potential for increasing scientific connectivity through better websites and social networks.

Education and Learning
In addition to my other research interests, I am passionate about improving education using hands-on, workshop-style lessons. In order to pursue this, I’ve gotten involved with the Software Carpentry Foundation and trained to become a certified Software Carpentry and Data Carpentry instructor. I recently taught my first Software Carpentry workshop at Columbia University; the workshop was very well received and I hope to teach many more workshops in the years to come.

Learn more at or

Follow Sean on twitter: @SeanBarberie

Contact Sean at sean {dot} barberie /at/ ronininstitute [dot] org