The_Message: September 2023

Wishing you a happy Rosh Hashanah, Hispanic Heritage Month, and a wonderful new school year! Summer may be coming to a close, but the heat shows no sign of stopping. We’re sending this message bright and early because today at 12:00pm we are offering a Discovering NYC Open Data Class that we hope you will attend. It is in partnership with the Office of the Manhattan Borough President.

Last month, our summer Fellows capped off their time with us by hosting a Mapping Equity event that showcased how they’re using OpenStreetMap to collect data about the urban environment. The event received quite some coverage via PIT@CUNYOpenStreetMap US’s newsletter, and the Queens Ledger. Thank you to the Office of Council Member Jennifer Gutiérrez and North Brooklyn Parks Alliance for your continued partnership – we’re excited about the direction this initiative is heading!

At the start of the summer, we hired three talented Lab Associates. Today we want to introduce you to them. Hailee Luong, Hao Lun Hung, and Vaishali Talwar joined our Civic Innovation Lab to build their portfolios and play instrumental roles in responding to RADARs. They’re skilled in UX design, front-end development, back-end development, data science, and data visualization. Meet each of them in this blog post!

This September is a busy month for New Yorkers. Community Board Meetings are back in session, Climate Week is happening, there’s a Council hearing on the role of AI, emerging technology, and computer instruction in NYC public schools, and of course, Queens Tech Night on September 13th. See below for many other upcoming events (and job opportunities!).

Cheers to Fall!

— BetaNYC

Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month 🎊

In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month (Sep 15-Oct 15), we are paying tribute to these STEM trailblazers from the Hispanic/Latinx/Latine community!

Nicole Hernandez Hammer is a sea-level researcher and environmental-justice advocate, whose work highlights the disproportionate impacts of climate change. In 2015, she was a guest of the former First Lady Michelle Obama at the State of the Union.

David Silva Ossa is the Co-Founder of Techqueria, a nonprofit founded in 2015, which currently has over 12,000 global members. Techqueria fosters and supports Latinx professionals in professional development and becoming tech leaders.  

Rocío Medina van Nierop is the Cofounder and CEO of Latinas in Tech, a nonprofit which cultivates a networking environment for Latina women working in technology. In addition, the company advocates for the inclusion and representation of Latinxs in the tech sphere.    

What’s New at BetaNYC?

Come Learn About NYC Open Data! 📊

The NYC Open Data Ambassadors holds monhtly classes for anyone to learn about NYC Open Data. The next one takes place today at 12:00 pm, in partnership with the Office of the Manhattan Borough President! View the full schedule at

We’re heading to Queens Tech Night! 💡

Join us on September 13 for a fun evening at the Culture Lab in Long Island City. Drop by the BetaNYC table and say hello!

NYC Open Data Week 2024 is coming! 🎤

We can’t wait to build the 2024 program with you! Keep an eye out for the Open Data Week call for proposals, including School of Data and Data Through Design, later this month! Sign up to receive our announcement at

Community News, Events and Announcements

Here are some content picks from our community. Share yours in next month’s newsletter.

Civic Tech and Legislation Updates 👀 

The NYC Open Data Help Desk is celebrating 10,000 inquiries! NYC Chief Analytics Officer Martha Norrick recently sat down with Govtech and StateScoop to reflect on the City’s progress with Open Data.

AI regulation on Capitol Hill: this month marks a series of listening sessions with the CEOs of major tech companies, on how AI is being regulated.

Upcoming NYC Council hearing: the Committees on Technology and Education will hold a joint hearing on September 20 on AI and emerging technology in public schools.

Advocates for Children of New York released a report highlighting that only “31.1% of schools are fully accessible” — more than 30 years after the Americans with Disabilities Act was passed.  

Do you use NYCityMap? The NYC Office of Technology and Innovation wants your feedback as the tool is being reformed.

Drops in speeding violations: the NYC Department of Transportation announced that in the first year with 24/7 speed cameras, speed camera violations decreased by an average of 30%, among other milestones.

The New York City Independent Budget Office released a report on the vacancy rates of rent stabilized apartments, and did a deep dive into units marked vacant for multiple consecutive years.

Speaking of housing, NYC Planning released a story map illustrating where housing is being added throughout the City.

Chris Whong developed an interactive 3D tree map showcasing tree dispersion, and Cornell Tech researchers launched Tree Folio NYC, which illustrates how much shade trees provide.   

Where are the rats? The NYC Health Department launched NYC Rat Map, which lets you view rat inspection results, follow up actions and track rodent activity. 

Upcoming Events 📆

Sept 8 at 12pm Discovering NYC Open Data: Online Session in partnership with The Office of the Manhattan Borough President

Sept 8 at 1pm Data Sharing and Cyberinfrastructure Working Group

Sept 12 at 2pm Talk Data to Me: Open Source Tools in Progressive Tech

Sept 13 at 6:30pm Queens Tech Night 2023

Sept 14 at 1pm Find Your Summit — Designing criminal justice tech in collaboration with directly impacted folks

Sept 14 at 3pm The Responsible Tech Summit: Shaping Our Digital Future

Sept 15-17 HackCT’s inaugural Transportation Hackathon (happening in-person and virtually!)

Sept 17-24 Climate Week NYC

Sept 18 at 5:30pm Transit Techies #18: NYU CUSP x Transit Techies: Project Vibe & More!

Sept 19 at 5:30pm New York City Climate Week Celebration 2023 

Sept 20 at 1pm NYC Council hearing with the Committee on Technology and the Committee on Education

Sept 20 at 2pm Climate Justice and Energy Democracy: Putting Frontline Communities First

Sept 25-27 NYGeoCon 2023

Oct 3 October Civic Tech’ish Happy Hour 

Oct 14 at 9am TransportationCamp NYC 2023

Announcements, Job Openings and Opportunities 📢

Submit to this list by filling out this form and see our #Jobs channel in Slack for more posts.

Join our community! 🛸

Like this newsletter and what we do? Donate $23 or more to our 2023 campaign and support employment opportunities for our Civic Innovation LabCivic Innovation Fellows and Apprentices to grow with us.

See you next month! Peace, openness and gratitude 🗽