Merkle Aquila has a strong philanthropic culture with ongoing support for charitable causes and a “Giving Back Crowd”, as well as initiatives around environmental responsibility and encouraging young people to study STEM subjects. One team of analysts wanted to go further and put to the leadership team the concept of a long-term partnership with a charity based on knowledge transfer and skills sharing.
Stop the Traffik (STT), a global charity pioneering the cause of intelligence-led prevention of human trafficking, was identified as the right partner for this pro-bono initiative. Despite the time pressure of working around existing client obligations and dispersed locations, a strong team ethos and careful communication ensured this challenge was met and overcome.
A key element of the work delivered for STT has been the creation of an advanced data visualisation tool which leverages open-source social-media data to highlight important trends in public sentiment around human trafficking.
Alongside this, the team have helped STT extract more value from their trafficking incident data by sharing best practices around data structure and leveraging open source tools to automate data cleaning processes. The Merkle Aquila team are excited about the analytic possibilities thatthe “Traffik Analysis Hub” (a collaboration between STT and IBM) will bring to further improve the charity’s understanding of key trends in trafficking, enabling STT to focus their efforts where it matters most.
Alongside creating tools, the team have also run trainings to upskill STT’s staff in their data visualisation capabilities, and all this is contributing towards STT’s programme strategy through enhanced collection, analysis and visualisation of data. Merkle Aquila’s team continues to work closely with STT to implement innovative solutions leveraging natural language processing which will allow STT to build a deeper understanding of perception of trafficking related issues across the globe.