Daniel Zhao

My Work

Data science

2019 Civic Digital Fellowship Integrating multiple sources of customer feedback data I created a modular technical framework for a dashboard that integrates data from Twitter, Google Analytics, web feedback systems, and internal data sources. I led stakeholder engagement and defined product requirements to facilitate future development. Tools
  • R Shiny
  • reticulate
  • spaCy
Waze Traffic Dashboard Visualizing congestion patterns in Louisville using crowdsourced Waze data I used Waze data to visualize traffic patterns in Louisville, pinpoint congestion points, and make recommendations to planners, saving the city money by not having to hire outside engineering firms. Internship at Louisville's Office of Civic Innovation. Part of Louisville's larger Waze processor project. Tools
  • MS Power BI
  • AWS
  • SQL
  • R
Make Trade, Not War Tracking the US-China trade war using natural language processing Applied sentiment analysis and LDA topic modeling on scraped White House press releases and Chinese state media articles. Correlated changes in sentiment to major trade war developments. Final project for Big Data and Global Policies. With Gordon Xiang, Huahao Zhou. I led the technical side. Tools
  • Python
  • Selenium
  • BeautifulSoup
  • R

Reference resources

I'm currently working on creating reference guides for data science material, as a way to document what I'm learning in courses, use as a reference tool down the road, and hopefully be useful to others. These will be updated as I learn more and take the time to add to these guides.

I'm also working on creating one for Python. Let me know if there are any errors and things I can change!

Social science & policy

PICTURE Grants: a proposal to empower civic technologists

July 2019 (with Nik Marda, David Frankel, Alaz Sengul). Full text on inspire2serve.gov, website.

One of the pressing challenges that we face in advancing America's technology infrastructure and digital service delivery is encouraging enough young technologists to use their skills for public service. Three other Civic Digital Fellow and I identified a model that other sectors use to attract talent — student loan forgiveness — to propose an initiative to would get young software engineers, data scientists, and designers back in the public sector.

Report on European Union Copyright Directive

May 2019. For CPSC 184 final project. Full text, GitHub.

Describes the recently enacted set of stricter copyright laws in the European Union. In addition to a qualitative analysis, I conducted a sentiment analysis using tweets and found that attitudes towards the Directive may be much harsher among American technology companies than they actually are among European Union citizens.

State of the Connecticut Green Bank

Spring 2019. For Yale Roosevelt Institute.

Detailing the history of the nation's first green bank, the various green energy programs that it helps sponsors across the state of Connecticut, the interplay between its investment model and its shift towards equitable access to green energy, and present challenges in the face of Connecticut's budgetary challenges. I led this research as Center Head of the Yale Roosevelt Institute's Center for Energy and Environment.

Policy brief on Passic River

Spring 2018. For Mikie Sherrill's congressional campaign in NJ-11.

Details the role of the Passic River in the trajectory of New Jersey's economic growth, past state- and federal-level efforts to prevent flooding, and current efforts by the Environmental Protection Agency to clean up contamination by chemical companies that have historically dumped pollutants into the river.

Mobility, density, diversity, and the legacy of Jane Jacobs: measuring segregation in the urban built environment

May 2018. For final project for U.S. Social Policy and Inequality. Full text.

Research proposal for a study to determine a relationship between characteristics of the built environment, such as street configuration, transit access, building dilapidation, and tree cover, and the extent of racial segregation in urban neighborhoods. Would utilize data sources such as the NYC Zoning & Land Use Map, the New York Street Tree Map, the Treepedia Green View Index, and GIS data.

As a side project, I'm collecting this data to conduct the statistical analysis sometime in the future.

Future of healthcare: increasing interoperability of electronic health records

May 2018. For final project for Science and Politics of Cancer.

A history of electronic health record (EHR) adoption in the United States, why interoperability of health data from different EHRs vendors has stalled, and how further interoperability can benefit big data-based drug research, precision medicine, and patient-centered care.

Course notes

These are notes I've compiled for courses I've taken, as a study and review tool. Feel free to use at your own discretion, although I make no guarantees for the accuracy of the notes or the degree to which they will represent the course as taught in future semesters.


Piano arrangements

Piano notations

Random stuff

Map of hubs of US Big Three airline companies (Google Maps)

As of December 2018. [Note: Delta has since grown Boston (BOS) into a hub, and established focus city operations Austin (AUS), Nashville (BNA), and San Jose (SJC).]