SuperTalk Mississippi

Third annual data summit begins at MSU

Photo by News Mississippi

State and industry leaders are set to gather in Starkville for the third annual Data Summit. 

The event, hosted by Mississippi State University’s National Strategic Planning and Analysis Research Center (NSPARC), will take place today and tomorrow at The Mill at MSU.

Keynote addresses during the two-day event will be given by Mississippi Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves and NSPARC Executive Director Domenico “Mimmo” Parisi. Reeves will speak at 8:15 a.m. on Friday, with Parisi giving the lunch keynote on the same day at 12 p.m.

Sessions at the summit will explore how data science can lead to new innovations and processes within the “smart city” concept across various industries, including agriculture, communication and media, education, energy, infrastructure, city planning, government, health, transportation and logistics, public safety, security and data governance.

For a full schedule of the event, click here – Data Summit Schedule 

With an increasing reliance on data across the world, Parisi says that it’s important to bring leaders together to discuss how we can all benefit from new advancements. 

“Data has become an essential part of our lives, and how we process, analyze, and make it available will determine the extent to which cities will be able to compete on local, regional, and global levels,” he said. “The event provides a forum to inform public officials, community leaders, economic developers, and many other stakeholders of the value of data in driving all aspects of human progress.”

Mark Henry of the Mississippi Department of Employment Security will serve as master of ceremonies. MSU President Mark E. Keenum, Starkville Mayor Lynn Spruill and Mississippi House of Representatives District 43 Rep. Rob Roberson will welcome guests to Starkville.

Key speakers from the business world include Craig Sparks, CIO of C Spire, Jessica Osaki, product operations manager at Google, Tony Sager, senior VP at the Center for Internet Security, Matt Smith, Connected and Automated Vehicles program manager at Michael Baker International, and Judd Williams, CIO for the NCAA. 

Other special guests include Craig Orgeron, executive director of the Mississippi Department of Information Technology, and Steve Soltis, senior advisor with MAS Leadership Communication and former lead executive communication strategist for the chairman of Coca Cola.

NSPARC works to expand the boundaries of data science to create knowledge and innovations that drive human progress. The center’s expertise includes data analytics, predictive analytics, machine learning, artificial intelligence, system of systems, data governance, cybersecurity, cloud technology, and high-performance computing. 

Known primarily for its work with smart government and more than 50 data innovations created in the last 10 years, NSPARC has achieved national prominence in the data science field. For more information, visit

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