University research is at the heart of our engagement with the Waterloo innovation ecosystem


In the Data Innovation Lab, we’re proud to lead and champion engagement with top universities globally. We believe that engaging with universities, and the innovation ecosystems around them, is fundamentally important to help us deliver future value to our customers, as well as creating partnerships that help grow and develop more new ideas in those locations for wider benefit. For example: Our Legal business has established the Legal Tech Open Innovation Challenge through its partnership with CodeX – the Stanford Center for Legal Informatics; We are a founding member of bigdata@CSAIL at MIT and this directly led to our early engagement and investment in Tamr, an MIT spin-out.

We’re really excited as part of our activities in Waterloo Region to be starting a new collaborative research project at the University of Waterloo with Professor Ihab Ilyas, one of the co-founders of Tamr. Collaborating with teams in Thomson Reuters working on big data projects, as well as staff from Thomson Reuters Labs in Waterloo, the research will create algorithms to highlight anomalies in enterprise data sets, improving data quality. More information on that can be found here. (more…)

All of us will be passengers on the road to the future


Every day, Thomson Reuters touches millions of automobile aficionados around the world, including people who design vehicles, regulate their safety, invest in automakers, provide tax advice to them, sue and defend manufacturers and suppliers, and, in the case of the 2015 Frankfurt Auto Show which is currently underway, marvel at the sleek lines, speed and agility of the concept cars that offer unique and wonderful views of a future of which we all want to be a part. In the next few days were running a series of blog posts that will provide glimpses into the professional lives of our customers touching the auto industry, through proprietary data, insights and expert analysis that only Thomson Reuters can deliver.

Nothing captures the imagination of the public faster than a discussion on the car of the future. The driving public have been dreaming about flying cars for decades, and recently Toyota made headlines when a patent application suggesting they were working on one was published. Now in this case US20150246720 describes “an aerocar including a stackable wing and methods for morphing the stackable wing…atop the aerocar,” as opposed to a fully functional flying vehicle, so in reality we are probably many years away from a time when we can fly to work during our daily commute.

Cars that drive themselves were also a part of the automotive dreamscape that is until recent advances, most publicly by Google, demonstrate that the future of autonomous driving may be closer than previously thought. Experts claim the technology is still years away from being viable in all traffic conditions, but that has not stopped Google from conducting field tests, or Apple from apparently speaking with the State of California about autonomous driving regulations. Beyond these news reports, the automotive industry in general has filed a significant number of patents in the autonomous driving field, and Figure 1 shows the trend in autonomous driving patent published by the top six filers in the field over the last three years. (more…)

Filling 9 billion bowls by farming our data

farming data

How will we feed 9 billion people in 2050? If we are to meet the hungry demands of our future, we need a revolution in the way we produce and deliver food. Here’s an excerpt from our 9 Billion Bowls multimedia report, which tells the story of a diverse group of scientists, students, analysts and inventors who are using Big Data and leading edge technologies in entirely new ways to make this happen. Access the full report at

Precision agriculture, sustainable intensification

Today’s farmers put Silicon Valley to shame, with their adoption of data, analytics and technology to maximize both yields and efficiencies. One of the most promising tools is Data Share from Thomson Reuters.

This phone app enables farmers to confidentially share crop data and photos. Collectively, it gives them and other farmers a very accurate, unbiased view of crop health in specific locations. Imagine farmers all over the globe uploading such data in real time, on a regular basis.

How will Data Share help farmers plant more efficiently?

“The key to feeding more people is connecting farmers like Larry Winger to the bigger global picture so they can adapt to changing markets and climate conditions. Increase knowledge and increase yields,” says Kris Carlson, Global Head of Agriculture and Metals at Thomson Reuters. (more…)

Thomson Reuters at the Open Data Science “Science Against Slavery” Hackathon

Millions of forced laborers around the world generate an estimated $150 billion a year in profits for those who exploit them, according to the International Labour Organisation (ILO). Two-thirds of this comes from commercial sexual exploitation and the other third from forced labor exploitation.

Thomson Reuters is deeply committed to confronting this problem of human trafficking, by providing our customers with vast amounts of data that can be used to help identify business partners that are potentially involved with illicit activities. Our World-Check product exposes risks that human networks hide and, we have recently partnered with two of the world’s premier anti-slavery organizations to turn the power of data analytics onto corrupt labor brokers and people traffickers.

Recent legislation pressures companies to avoid any association with forced labor. For example, beginning in October 2015, the Modern Slavery Act in the UK requires companies to confirm that steps have been taken to ensure that slavery/human trafficking are not part of the business or its supply chain. As part of our commitment against human trafficking and forced labor, five members of our Data Innovation Lab (Henry Chong, Dave Reed, Brian Romer, Joe Rothermich and Brian Ulicny) and two technology associates (Amit Shavit and Wendy Tay) based in Manhattan participated in the “Science Against Slavery” Hackathon organized by Open Data Science on Saturday, August 29th. The event was held at Impact Hub NYC, a “coworking space…for driving positive environmental and social change”. There were about 30 participants in the all-day Hackathon, ranging from undergraduate students at Brown, Northeastern, and NYU, to a cell biologist post-doc at Yale, a data scientist from Macy’s, a game theorist from Pitt, and several others.

After a late start, organizer Eric Schles gave a presentation on how women wind up being trafficked, due mostly to economic or social factors beyond their control. He sketched out how the digital traces of their trafficking online are used to bring cases against their exploiters, often only after they are hospitalized or police respond to domestic disturbance calls. Eric was, until very recently, an analyst in the Human Trafficking Response Unit of the Manhattan District Attorney’s office, focusing mostly on supply-side traces. His focus was on building automated tools for law enforcement, to gather and prepare information leading to the conviction and prosecution of sex traffickers on both the supply and the demand side. Eric’s GitHub repository of code for scraping and analyzing escort ads from sites like — one of the more notorious Craigslist-like sites for escort ads — provided a starting point for the Hackathon. (more…)

Filling 9 billion bowls: The answer is data


How will we feed 9 billion people in 2050? If we are to meet the hungry demands of our future, we need a revolution in the way we produce and deliver food. Access the full report at

Perhaps no other area is so ripe for data-based solutions than the production and delivery of food. In fact, a quiet revolution is already taking place. A diverse group of scientists, students, analysts and inventors is turning insights into innovation to meet the hungry demands of our future. They’re leveraging big data and leading-edge technologies in entirely new ways to get far better results at every link in the food supply chain. Better food, more of it, with less waste and fewer chemicals.

The 9 Billion Bowls report tells their stories in a single place:


‘National companies considering commercial drones must consider state privacy laws,’ by Zachary D. Ludens, Esq., and Matthew E. Kohen, Esq.



For a one-minute audio intro to the commentary, click here.

WestlawNext users: Click here to read the full article on WestlawNext.

Zachary Ludens

Zachary Ludens

Matthew Kohen

Matthew Kohen

Only disruptors need apply

The technology industry is abuzz these days with stories of companies raising money at ever higher valuations and the number of technology-focused companies getting huge amounts of capital and even higher valuations. This year alone, 107 companies have completed fundraising rounds with venture capital investors of $100 million or more, according to a report from CB Insights and KPMG. Of these companies, 35 have entered the ‘unicorn club’ (VC-backed companies with $1 billion valuations).

One area where fundraising from venture capital is rare is in the Islamic economy overall and the Islamic digital economy in particular. In their Digital Islamic Services Report, Deloitte reports “no VC funds in the Middle East […] specifically targeted at Islamic needs and Digital Islamic Services”.  The dearth of venture capital interest in the Islamic digital economy does not mean there is a lack of a market. Muslim consumers represent an estimated 8% of the global digital economy according to an ongoing Thomson Reuters study on the Islamic Digital Economy that we had an exclusive look at and the aggregate value of Muslim consumers within the digital economy is expected to grow 20% annually through 2020, outpacing the rest of the global digital economy.

innovation 4 impactThe growth rate of the Islamic digital economy, and its potential to outpace the (still rapidly growing) digital economy is entirely understandable with a large Muslim population that is younger on average than the global population. In some markets, such as Pakistan, the digital economy is just becoming enabled with the recent launch of 4G mobile networks that make it possible for many apps (particularly those relying on GPS technology to customize content based on specific location).

Progress, such as the introduction of 4G in Pakistan, will create a massive opportunity in similar markets where the cost has been too high and the mobile networks not ready to support the demand for capacity from widespread diffusion of smartphones.  This is particularly likely to be the case in markets where the population is younger, which will support rising demand for mobile technology from Quran apps to Halal Travel Apps, online Islamic education websites and location-services software to locate the nearest Halal restaurant. The Islamic digital economy has woven into the lives of many Muslims worldwide and has become part of their day to day lifestyle.

With the backdrop of venture capital funds seeking out the latest ‘hot’ digital economy company and the dearth of Islamic digital economy companies being a part of this ‘unicorn economy’, there is a big opportunity for tech entrepreneurs if they can get noticed. One way to get noticed is through the first #Innovation4Impact competition that will be a feature at the Global Islamic Economy Summit in Dubai, UAE from 5-6 October 2015.

Innovation 4 Impact, which is organized by the Dubai Silicon Oasis Authority and Thomson Reuters, in collaboration with the American Muslim Consumer Consortium, is looking for innovative entrepreneurs across the globe whose solutions will disrupt the status quo across the digital sphere. The competition aims to support start-ups and businesses in the Islamic digital economy and serve will as an incubator for SMEs across the world.

The Innovation 4 Impact competition is open to any company or entrepreneur with a potentially groundbreaking idea or business venture. Applicant’s ideas will be judged on different aspects including: innovation, economic and social impact as well as the scalability across markets and regions. Visit the website for details on how to submit your idea and to enterThe deadline is August 10, 2015!

Exchange Magazine: The Art of Data

Exchange magazine

In the latest issue of Thomson Reuters Exchange, we’re celebrating data, the core of our business and the lifeblood of the industry. While our focus is typically on the science of data – collecting, curating, cleaning, managing and disseminating data – we know there is also an art to making data useful, powerful and insightful. Enjoy our featured articles below or download Exchange for free on your iPhone®, iPad® or Android™ tablet device.


Back to the Future

Leon Saunders Calvert, global head of Capital Markets & Advisory, and Keith Mullin, International Financing Review editor-at-large discuss the current changes and comebacks within investment banking.


Thomson Reuters hosts first girls only CoderDojo in London


Photo credit: Jamilah Knowles. View her comic strip from the day here. This post was written by Kate Williams, Senior Communications Specialist, Thomson Reuters.

Last month, CoderDojo London and Thomson Reuters held a Girls Only CoderDojo, a ground breaking initiative in the world of technology. CoderDojo is a global community of free programming clubs for young people, run all over the world on a weekly basis to give young people between the ages of 7 and 17 the opportunity to learn how to develop computer code, websites, apps, programs, games, digital media and explore technology. Attendees also build complementary skills of creativity, innovation, communication, collaboration, teamwork and leadership.

John Claffey and Thomas Attree from our Technology organization are volunteers for CoderDojo. They made a commitment at Mozfest last year to run a “Girls Only” event as part of their teach the web campaign. Thomson Reuters was extremely keen to support this initiative, as it echoes the work we do to encourage girls into STEM careers (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math). As far as we’re aware, it was the first event of its kind, and the fact that it coincided with London Technology Week made it all the more appropriate!


Man on a Mission: Is DRM stifling creativity and business?

Cory Doctorow

We’re proud to partner with Cass Business School on a series titled TechTalks@Cass, featuring speakers from successful start-ups in and around London. Here’s a recap and recording of the latest talk, featuring Cory Doctorow. This post was written by Ti Maja, Manager, Corporate Compliance.

New York Times best selling science fiction author, entrepreneur, activist, journalist, blogger and former comic store clerk, Cory Doctorow could easily rest on his laurels. Instead he has a mission to shake up the digital media landscape and tackle abuse of Digital Rights Management (DRM) laws. In a talk that ranged through many subjects from the archaic London leaseholds to grass roots activism, he laid out his goals: (more…)