Big Data Literacy: A New Dimension of Digital Divide, Barriers in Learning via Exploring “Big Data”

Big Data Literacy: A New Dimension of Digital Divide, Barriers in Learning via Exploring “Big Data”

Dimitar Christozov (American University in Bulgaria, Bulgaria) and Stefka Toleva-Stoimenova (State University of Library Studies and Information Technology, Bulgaria)
Copyright: © 2016 |Pages: 16
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-9840-6.ch104


The chapter addresses the problems of digital divide in the light of learning from data in the era of accumulated, available, and accessible Big Data. The phenomenon of Big Data arose in the last years and offered new dimensions of digital divide: the challenge that the human society faces since the appearance of computer technology. Objectives of this chapter are to highlight problems and barriers in learning from Big Data and to initiate discussion on the ways to overcome those new challenges. The chapter tries to define the “Big Data Phenomenon,” to identify the phases and activities in the process of learning from data, and to relate them to learning from Big Data. As a result, a paradigm of competences and barriers for acquiring Big Data literacy are proposed as a new dimension of literacy in dividing the human society.
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The objectives of this book is to discuss “Data-Based Wisdom as the use of technology, leadership and culture to create, transfer and preserve the organizational knowledge embedded in its data, with a view to achieving the organizational vision.” Learning from data, knowledge transfer and building a deep understanding of processes, forces cause-and-effect relationships which are essential in guiding rational behavior. Preserving knowledge is another essential aspect, which allows a continuance to following rational behavior. These two major objectives require mastering the skills to learn from data. Those skills have evolved over the centuries and we now face a new round of this evolution, which might be marked as literacy to learn from Big Data. Skills to learn from Big Data are becoming more and more important for organizations, but also for individuals. We are facing a new dimension of digital division, which affects both social entities and individuals. Understanding the opportunities provided by Information Technologies to record all facts associated with events that happen inside and outside of an organization in a searchable media to learn about the forces which cause the given behavior is just a first necessary condition. Equally important is how to extract the useful knowledge from data and how to utilize this knowledge. These represent the challenges of the day.

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