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“Data Science” makes businesses more successful

July 24, 2017

Decisions concerning the General Data Protection Regulation

For the Harvard Business Review, it is the “sexiest job of the 21st century.” The US management consultancy McKinsey estimates that there will be 150,000 unfilled positions this year. Data scientists are highly sought-after experts. This comes as absolutely no surprise, considering that they take care of the greatest corporate treasure of all: customer, product and market data.

And this treasure is skyrocketing to mind-boggling proportions: In 2014, IT analysts estimated that the global volume of data would double every two years. It is expected to amount to 44 zettabytes by 2020. That equals 40 trillion gigabytes, or 57 times the sum total of all the grains of sand on all the world's beaches.

Not only IT specialists but also managing directors, marketing managers and product managers have to base their strategic decisions on this wealth of data. Hence, those who are data illiterate will not be able to take the right decisions to make their businesses successful. What is more, the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which will come into force across the EU on May 25, 2018, causes considerable uncertainty in the business community: organizations in breach of GDPR will face hefty fines of 4 percent of their global annual turnover.

EU flags fly in the wind
The high penalties for violating the European-wide General Data Protection Regulation is causing turmoil in the business community. Photo © CC0 Public Domain

More know-how for the right decisions

Being able to make strategic data-based decisions in compliance with legal requirements is thus becoming a sine qua non. To respond to exactly this need, the WU Executive Academy has developed “Data Science”, an innovative three-module training course that will be launched in November 2017 and is designed to provide a roadmap through the data jungle.

Over the course of 12 in-class days, the program, which is taught in English, will help participants develop a focused and practical understanding of how to derive maximum benefit from Big Data—across domains and functions. “Data scientists are interdisciplinary generalists,” says Barbara Stöttinger, Dean of the WU Executive Academy. “They are required to have a thorough grounding in data collection, data analysis as well as data interpretation, and, even more importantly, must be able to ask the right business questions that are to be answered with the help of Big Data.

Prof. Dr. Axel Polleres

  • Academic Director

The training is not meant to be a substitute for a degree in computer science but to make it possible for participants to develop a better understanding of the challenges encountered in the context of dealing with data.

Real-world case studies and data science processes

Real-world case studies and data sets will provide participants with an opportunity to familiarize themselves with all steps of the “data science” process—from data collection and data preparation to data analysis and data visualization. Moreover, the use of predictive analytics, for instance when it comes to making reliable predictions about the future based on customer data, as well as the legal requirements of the EU's General Data Protection Regulation will be made accessible to them in an easy-to-understand manner. The icing on the cake is that participants will work on projects from their organizations. Academics of WU Vienna and distinguished industry professionals will equip them with a comprehensive combination of academic and practical skills.

“Data Science” is intended for managing directors, executives working in marketing, supply chain management or finance as well as employees from the fields of IT and health care who have to deal with data in the course of their day-to-day work and who are looking to develop their analytical, business and legal skills with a view to gaining a better understanding of Big Data.

Are you interested in a career as a Data Scientist? Join our three-module "Data Science" program at the WU Executive Academy in Vienna starting on November 8.

For more information, please visit the program site.

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