As rates of urbanisation continue to increase, society needs to better utilise its scarce urban resources. This can be achieved through the use of big data. “Big data” is a universal reality and a reflection of our society. As individuals we cannot avoid contributing to it nor can we avoid its wide spread (and largely unbeknownst) use. Big data has shaped our daily lives in ways that could not have been imagined a few decades ago ranging from traffic management to online purchases, taxes, insurance, finances, food and housing choices. This will only grow in significance and scope, big data is here to stay.