The Age of Big Data: From KDD-89 to KDD-2012

We live in the age of Big Data - the Second major revolution in modern civilization after the Industrial revolution: the Information Revolution.  Big data is used to improve sales, reduce customer attrition, recommend movies, music, and people, reduce fraud, predict crime, find new drugs, develop personalized medicine, understand climate change, and many other applications. 


Our Community

SIGKDD, as the main professional association for data mining and knowledge discovery (also called predictive analytics and data science) is on the leading edge of this revolution It started with workshops on Knowledge Discovery in Data (KDD) organized by Gregory Piatetsky-Shapiro in 1989. These workshops grew into the International KDD conference in 1995 organized by Usama Fayyad and Ramasamy Uthurusamy. In 1998 we formed the SIGKDD organization as part of ACM, the largest international association in computing, with over 120,000 members.


KDD, the Annual International Conference on Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining

The primary focus of SIGKDD is to provide the premier forum for advancement and adoption of the "science" of knowledge discovery and data mining.  Our main activity is to organize KDD, the leading conference on data mining and knowledge discovery. Held since 1995, the KDD conference is top-ranked in Data Mining, according to Microsoft Research Asia. KDD-2011 was held in San Diego, Calif., and was the largest data-mining meeting in the world, with over 1,100 participants from around the world. It attracted over 714 paper submissions, of which 126 papers were accepted. These include full research papers (extremely difficult to get accepted) and poster presentation papers.  In addition, KDD conference has an Industry/Government Applications Track  that requires submitting a full peer reviewed paper for presentation, and an Industry Practice Expo, which consists of special invited talks by practitioners in the industry who have deployed serious/high impact applications of KDD.  

In 2012, we will gather again, this time in Beijing, for KDD-2012, the 18th Annual International Conference on Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining, where we will share the latest research and applications in the field.


Awards, Competition, Recognition

SIGKDD has been organizing the annual KDD Cup competition since 1997.  Designed to empower scientists to address real world challenges by providing them with real data sets, the competition has covered many topics over the years, including direct marketing, retail data analysis, network intrusion detection, clickstream data analysis, social network analysis, text mining, recommendations, medical image analysis, and student evaluation. The success of KDD Cup competition has inspired many other competitions such as the $1M Netflix Prize and the $3M Heritage Health Prize, and has led to the rise of many other analytics/data mining competitions today as well as competition-based businesses like Kaggle.

 SIGKDD gives two prestigious awards annually, the Innovation Award and the Service Award, which are the highest awards given in the world of Data Mining and are considered the equivalent of “Nobel” prizes of data mining.  The Innovation Award is given for outstanding technical contributions to the field of knowledge discovery in data and data mining that have had lasting impact in furthering the theory and/or development of commercial systems. Winners include some of the brightest stars in the data mining field.

The SIGKDD Service award is given for outstanding services contributions to the field of knowledge discovery in data and data mining. The winners are the dedicated scientists and community organizers that drive the success of the SIGKDD organization.

SIGKDD helps promote education and fosters the next generation of data scientists by giving Best Dissertation Awards and Best Student Paper Awards. In 2006 SIGKDD published a proposed curriculum for educating the next generation of students in data mining.


SIGKDD Newsletter

SIGKDD also publishes SIGKDD Explorations  - a magazine covering data mining and knowledge discovery. The founding Editor-in-Chief of SIGKDD Explorations was Usama Fayyad, later Editors-in-Chief included Sunita Sarawagi and Osmar Zaiane.  The current Editor-in-Chief of SIGKDD Explorations is Bart Goethals.  The Explorations Magazine serves as the official Newsletter of the ACM SIGKDD and is published twice yearly, with possible additional special issues as appropriate.


Our Future

We look forward to holding KDD-2012 in Beijing, China and we hope that it will set new records of attendance, new heights of quality, and that it will continue to contribute to the advancement of the science and practice of predictive analytics, data science, Big Data, and Data Mining and Knowledge Discovery in Databases. We are also confident that as the value of data continues to grow, so will our organization – with new members, new ideas and new initiatives. If you have not joined SIGKDD yet, you can do so at


Usama Fayyad, Gregory Piatetsky-Shapiro

Copyrights © 2023 All Rights Reserved - SIGKDD
ACM Code of Conduct