Bhavini Patel is the co-founder of BeamData, a civic tech venture that improves the data capacity of social enterprises and local governments by designing tech tools to help ask better questions and challenge misinformation with context-driven data collection. Her leadership role with BeamData is guided by the very firm belief that data technology is a powerful tool that can advance social justice and equality.

Bhavini Patel is a passionate systems thinker, who thrives on cultivating intimate connections with people of all cultures, backgrounds and sectors. As a naturally curious person, she persistently asks questions and seek to solve social problems through direct impact. Her personal narrative stems from the very firm belief that what you say about yourself is just as important as what you actually do. This has inspired her to strive for a multidisciplinary understanding of the social sciences guided by practical community engagement and entrepreneurial endeavours.

Entrepreneurship is innovative thinking and creative leadership that strives to solve human problems.

BeamData became a viable idea after a series of conversations with local government and nonprofit leaders. They collectively conveyed a significant resource and knowledge gap in accessing the power of data driven decision-making. We responded with a low-cost and easy-to-use tool that helps collect, analyse and visualise data; however, we take it one step further by ensuring the data collected is culturally and linguistically relevant to the communities served.

Empathy, determination and risk-taking are the key skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur. Empathy builds emotional investment and a sense of purpose which fuels determination and the potential to take risk. This is key because building on a viable idea takes multiple failures and rejections before it solves problems. It’s important to remember why you’re committed to the success of entrepreneurial endeavour over other potential foregone opportunities.

I love the freedom of problem-solving and creative-thinking because it’s a process that cultivates self-growth. I also value meeting other passionate people, who are dedicated to building a better world.

In our technology driven world, I’m still searching for a company that is consciously ethical in the way that it designs and deploys its tools. There are many problems in the current landscape of tech entrepreneurship and many solutions have been ignored in pursuit of the bottom line. I’m hopeful that we can do better as a society.

I would want to discuss what it takes to build a culture of entrepreneurship that is not solely dedicated to obtaining a bottom line. How can we create a entrepreneurial culture that prioritises human-centric problem-solving?

Patience has been a key learning lesson for my personal growth as an entrepreneur. It’s important to take a step back and allow time to take its course because it would be naive to assume all situations and decisions can be controlled.

BeamData has predominantly relied on local funding opportunities based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania as well as consulting projects to grow and build our product.

BeamData has predominantly relied on local funding opportunities based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to grow.

Oxford is a curation of international thinkers, who have experienced various facets of the world. It’s a unique opportunity to critically engage with and learn from the Oxfordshire community. Oxfordshire can feel physically small if you don’t take learning advantage of the uniqueness of the community.

The Oxford Foundry has been a very useful learning tool.

If you have an idea, pursue it with passion (and don’t let money be a deciding factor).

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