What is biodiversity, how do you measure, monitor, and detect changes in it, and why should you care? These are some of the topics discussed in this techie’s perspective on the state of our biodiversity knowledge.
Dave Thau is WWF's Data and Technology Global Lead Scientist. He joined WWF on September 17th, bringing with him over 30 years of software development experience. Prior to WWF, he worked at Google where he helped launch Google Earth Engine, Google's geospatial big-data processing platform, and managed developer relations for Google Earth Engine and Google Earth Outreach. He has also worked with the Global Biodiversity Information Facility, the California Academy of Sciences, the Kansas University Museum of Natural History, and the All Species Foundation.
Dave’s work in the fields of data management, sustainability, artificial intelligence, and remote sensing has appeared in journals like Science, Nature, Remote Sensing of Environment, Sustainability, and Ecological Informatics. While at Google, he helped develop many projects including Global Forest Watch, with the World Resources Institute, and Map of Life, with researchers from Yale and the University of Florida.
Dave holds degrees from the University of California, Los Angeles, the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and a doctorate in computer science from the University of California, Davis. He also has an ant named in his honor - the charming Plectroctena thaui.