Fabien Girardin (PhD) is a researcher, engineer, executive active in the development of digital and humane technologies. He is the co-founder of the Near Future Laboratory, a micro-multinational design and research agency based in California and Europe. With a broad spectrum of interdisciplinary skills, he guides organizations in transforming data and experiments into innovative cultures, visions and solutions.
Throughout his career, Fabien has collaborated in dream teams that bring Data Science to the avant-garde of their domains. Most notably, he was the co-CEO at BBVA Data & Analytics a center of excellence in advanced analytics that derived knowledge from financial data to transform the banking industry. At Massachusetts Institute of Technology, he pioneered in techniques that analyze digital traces of human activity for urban innovation and applied them in the industry with a travel detection system produced for the Boeing Company. Subsequently, he co-created Quadrigram, a visual programming environment that democratizes data manipulation and visualization as part of a practice he coined as Sketching with Data.
In addition, Fabien has been an active actor in the establishment of Design Fiction, an approach to anticipate and speculate on the near future use of digital technologies. For instance, his exhibited works as well as apps like Memento and Humans offer tangible observations and visions to discuss the evolution of people relations with algorithms.
Fabien holds a Ph.D. degree in Computer Science and Digital Communications from Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF) in Barcelona, Spain. Along his academic journey, he was also affiliated with the Senseable City Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Prior to his graduate studies, he joined the Swiss Federal Institute of Technologies in Lausanne (EPFL) to manage and investigate the use of technologies for collaborative learning. Earlier in 1997, he developed a web directory popular in Switzerland that he later sold to a local Internet Service Provider to finance his studies in Computer Science at the Biel School of Engineering and expand his horizons working as a Software Engineer in Silicon Valley.
Besides occasional lectures in universities, design schools and business schools, Fabien speaks in international conferences such as O'Reilly Strata, TEDx, Picnic, Lift, Barcelona Design Week, and Smart City World Congress.
Selected media coverage