Cyber Society, Big Data, and Evaluation: An Introduction
This chapter presents the meaning of the concept of Big Data. It gives some first indications of how Big Data may be of value in evaluation. While some observers emphasize characteristics of the data as such, others highlight the implications of the data and their derivatives—processing algorithms and data products—for decision making as well as society as a whole. In the scientific community, Big Data journals have been established, and funding for the development of new analytical tools to utilize Big Data is growing. When Big Data is anonymized, aggregated, and analyzed, it can reveal significant new insights and trends about human behavior. Big Data often involves aspects of human behavior that have been previously difficult to observe, for example, personal connections and geolocation. The chapter also presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in this book.