Jacqueline Lu

President and Co-Founder, Helpful Places

Jacqueline helps organizations build new nervous systems that use tech and data.

She leads Helpful Places, a mission-driven start-up advancing DTPR, an open-source “system-to-people” communication standard that aims to increase greater transparency and civic dialogue on the use of digital technologies in the built environment. DTPR has been recognized by the World Economic Forum as a featured initiative of the ​​Future of the Connected World Global Action Plan, included in Cornell Tech University’s Urban Tech Hub’s Rebooting NYC Report and featured in publications such as Wired, FWD50, the Urban AI blog, and the University of Michigan’s Urban Technology newsletter.

Jacqueline is also Data Lead at Mozilla Foundation, where she is developing and implementing strategies and systems that use data and metrics to further the Foundation's impact.

Previously, she was Director of Digital Integration at Sidewalk Labs, where she led incorporating innovation objectives, technology policy and data ethics into the company’s approach to urban development projects. She led the delivery of the Digital Innovation Appendix, a technical document outlining the company’s approach to technology that was cited by GovTech as “one of the most extensive efforts ever for a private company to be transparent about smart cities tech and associated data”. She developed the technology strategy for the public realm section of the Master Innovation and Development Plan, and piloted a public life mapping project to support a local organization’s desire to understand how their neighbourhood park was being utilized and to gather metrics to support their programming activities.

As the inaugural Director of Data Analytics at the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation, she developed the agency’s data strategy, developed the open data program and founded its first data science team. As Open Data Coordinator, Jacqueline built collaborations between agency staff and civic technologists that enabled the public and community members to develop insights from Parks’ open data sets. Jacqueline also spearheaded the largest participatory street tree mapping project in U.S. history, culminating in a digital platform enabling the collaborative management of NYC’s urban forest.

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