Know Your Hubber: Tawheeda Wahabzada

Happy March! With the launch of Hub Members Open Data Watch's 2016 Open Data Inventory Report, we thought we'd introduce you to one of the people who made that report happen.

Tawheeda with journalist Anderson Cooper in 2016

Tawheeda with journalist Anderson Cooper in 2016

Tawheeda Wahabzada

Job Title and Organization
Research Assistant, Open Data Watch

Tell us what problems your organization is trying to solve and how they are doing that
We focus on open data and official statistics.  Our flagship product is the Open Data Inventory (ODIN), which assesses the coverage and openness of official statistics from 173 countries. Our goal is to help national statistics offices around the world improving their open data. Open data is, after all, important for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.

How do you help in doing this?
It certainly depends on the project! ODIN is my main project, and I worked on the review process, along with preparing for the ODIN launch. ODIN involves several phases of assessment. During the first phase, assessors record data availability across 20 data categories available through websites maintained by national statistical offices in 173 countries. During the reviewing phase, I checked if our ODIN assessors recorded the correct data. I also helped on the preparation of reports and dissemination of ODIN results for 2016.

What are some new exciting projects your organization is working on?

  • Following the ODIN 2016 launch on March 3, we will begin assessments for ODIN 2017.
  • ODW is exploring how to close gender data gaps for the Sustainable Development Goals with Data2X
  • ODW is working on making strategies for developing official statistics include more on open data.

What do you like most about being a part of the Hub community?
The atmosphere of the Hub, along with attending the brown bags (I want to keep my mind a rolling university).


Where is the most exotic place you’ve traveled?
Gaztelugatxe, Spain and New Delhi, India

What keeps you motivated?
Fighting Injustice: With the growing injustices, including the rise of hate crimes, I can no longer be a bystander. While protesting and attending marches are important ways to not normalize injustices, I’m finding alternative options, such as volunteering.
Meditation: To stay calm and mindful amidst the growing injustices.

What is the one book or article that inspires you?
I have multiple books: The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin, Conference of the Birds by Attar, and of course, the Harry Potter series.

If you could have another career—sky’s the limit—what would it be?
Hmm, I would either be an investigative journalist or a professional food taster.

It may surprise you that:

  • I’m a leftie
  • I used to snowboard until I had arthritis in my knees, so I snowshoe instead
  • In undergrad, I was known (among my friend groups) as “T-Dubs” or “T-Dubstep”

I can’t live without:

  • Tea
  • Yogurt
  • My family