Dan Chuparkoff

Civis Analytics and AWS

Data sets are growing rapidly. But in spite of this abundance of data, most organizations are still struggling to leverage all of it to understand their customers, figure out new markets, build their operations, and more. Data is the key to making these decisions effectively, but that data is buried deep in dozens of unconnected systems. There’s too much latency as data moves from point to point. Teams are stuck working at the lowest common denominator of their infrastructure. Resources and time are limited, but teams everywhere are struggling to use this incredible resource to become truly data-driven. It’s a mess.

Peter Bouchard

Partnering with Discovery

We are so happy to announce our partnership with Discovery Communications today. We’ll explore how the work Civis does can integrate in to Discovery’s global portfolio of television networks.

Caroline Grey

On building stuff at AWS re:Invent 2014

Our founder, Dan Wagner, was recently featured at AWS re:Invent in a Founders Fireside Chat with Amazon CTO, Dr. Werner Vogels. Watch the full video, or read an excerpt below:

The New York Times

A Formula to Find the Uninsured Around the Country

Enroll America is an organization with a big job: to find the uninsured around the country and persuade them to sign up for health insurance. It needs a good way to find them.

The organization realized early that it would need a detailed picture of just who was uninsured int he country and where they lived. [Enroll America] partnered with the data group Civis Analytics […]

To start, it conducted a huge phone survey of 12,000 adults around the country who use cellphones and land lines, asking people 10 basic questions in either English or Spanish. Then it folded in publicly available data about those individuals and their communities, using commercial databases and statistics from the census. It considered about 500 variables; the final model used a smaller number, 30, that together made a strong prediction. The goal was to create a score for each person that reflected the odds that the person would be uninsured.

“We started using the model initially to try to get to people at an individual level, and there was a degree of accuracy there,” said Gregg Ross, Enroll’s organizing director in North Carolina, one of 11 states where the group made a big push. “Once we started using it for this geographic targeting and coupling it with our knowledge of the communities, we were finding that upward of 80 percent of the people we contacted were uninsured.”

The New York Times

Obamacare: Who Was Helped Most

“Now a large set of data — from Enroll America, the group trying to sign up people for the program, and from the data firm Civis Analytics — is allowing a much clearer picture. The data shows that the law has done something rather unusual in the American economy this century: It has pushed back against inequality, essentially redistributing income — in the form of health insurance or insurance subsidies — to many of the groups that have fared poorly over the last few decades.”

Chicago Department of Public Health

City Uses New Technology to Target Women, Encourage Mammography

“CHICAGO – The Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) has joined Civis Analytics to conduct targeted outreach to uninsured women on the City’s South Side. The initiative encourages these women to take advantage of City-funded mammogram services.

To identify the women most likely to be uninsured, Chicago-based analytics firm, Civis Analytics, used a combination of private and public data to locate 5,000 female residents who are more likely to be uninsured due to various social factors. CDPH then developed direct mail appeals, encouraging them to visit Roseland Community Hospital’s state-of-the-art mammography center for a free, quality mammogram, paid for through an earlier investment made by the City of Chicago. […]

This marks the first time a local public health agency has used a similar method to directly reach individuals most likely to miss screenings for a treatable cancer. The mailer is the first part of an ongoing campaign to educate residents on the importance of getting regular breast exams and mammograms.”

Built in Chicago

7 fast growing Chicago tech companies that are hiring right now

“This civic tech company came out of President Obama’s cutting edge 2008 election campaign. Led by Obama’s former chief analytics officer Dan Wagner, Civis Analytics is reapplying the lessons they learned on the campaign trail as a big data startup. They have a number of different expertise including database integration, predictive analytics, randomized controlled experiments, and survey research.”

Caroline Grey

Civis Wins the Moxie Awards’ Best New Startup

This past June, we were thrilled to be awarded Best New Startup at the third annual Moxie Awards. Our data scientists and software developers were honored to take home the statue.


Obama’s Data Gurus Find Life Outside the Beltway

“A celebration was underway Thursday night on the seventh floor of a lofted office in Chicago’s West Loop. Civis Analytics, the firm founded by Dan Wagner, the former chief analytics officer of President Barack Obama’s re-election campaign, was marking (and marketing) its first birthday with the theme of a data “science fair.”

That meant, among other things: DJ’s wearing lab coats, big Mac computers demoing the company’s latest and greatest digital offerings; and very few attendees over the age of 35. That rare older set included Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who milled about for a half-hour and then offered some complimentary words to commemorate the occasion.”

in Press
Built in Chicago

Ex-Obama Techies Celebrate Birthday with Science Fair

“What happens when a bunch of data scientists throw a birthday party? There are drinks, food and music — and a science fair.

Civis Analytics, a company formed by many of the data scientists from Barack Obama’s re-election campaign, celebrated its one-year anniversary in style last night by hosting a science fair and Mayor Rahm Emanuel at its West Loop offices.

The experiments ranged from whimsical to insightful. One group came up with a way to calculate pi by using lentils, a circle, a square, a smartphone and a little code. Another project tracked the relative health-risk profile of populations by ZIP code, and another showed what people do most often after buying coffee at particular coffee shops.”

Built in Chicago

5 Chicago CTOs You Should Know: Gabriel Burt, Civis Analytics

“Gabriel Burt works to create social impact. For that reason, he joined the Obama campaign back in 2011 where he led a team of nine analytic engineers, working on 50TB analytics database. Since, he took his experience to Civis Analytics - a technology firm that solves the worlds problems with Big Data.”

MIT Technology Review

How President Obama’s Campaign Used Big Data to Rally Individual Voters

“Two years after Barack Obama’s election as president, Democrats suffered their worst defeat in decades. The congressional majorities that had given Obama his legislative successes, reforming the health-insurance and financial markets, were swept away in the midterm elections; control of the House flipped and the Democrats’ lead in the Senate shrank to an ungovernably slim margin. Pundits struggled to explain the rise of the Tea Party. Voters’ disappointment with the Obama agenda was evident as independents broke right and Democrats stayed home. In 2010, the Democratic National Committee failed its first test of the Obama era: it had not kept the Obama coalition together.”