The Next Competitive Advantage: The Ability to Leverage Big Data
New funding from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) awarded to two Telfer School professors confirms the importance of big data and its potential role in tackling some of the most pressing organizational challenges.
Bijan Raahemi, an associate professor in management information systems and technology and the founder of the Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining (KDD) Lab, will receive $105,000 over five years for a project titled “Feature Engineering Using Bio-Inspired Methods For Internet Data Analytics.” Jacomo Corbo, a Canada Research Chair in Information and Performance Management and a principal contributor to the IBM Centre for Business Analytics and Performance, will investigate the “Social and Economic Effects of Information Propagation in Large Networks,” supported by a $95,000 NSERC grant over five years.
From more robust industries and smarter cities to more efficient governments and more cost-effective healthcare, research involving the discovery of hidden insights from large volumes of data can make a real impact; the Economist magazine recently called big data a true ‘game-changing asset.’
Businesses actively analyzing their data are 2.2 times more likely to substantially outperform their peers, a 2011 study by IBM and MIT’s Sloan Management Review found. A shift towards more sophisticated data collection and analysis is anticipated as new predictive analytics services and software reach the market, and next-generation data applications become less expensive and more effective.
Heralding this new era of computing at the IBM PartnerWorld conference in February 2012, IBM CEO Virginia Rometty said that in coming years, firms that can leverage their data to provide cognitive insights and move their IT decisions from the back office to the front office will have a decisive advantage.
Taken together, the NSERC awards to Dr. Raahemi and Dr. Corbo illustrate the Telfer School’s excellence in a research area that promises to be influential – and linked to the next frontier of organizational competitiveness.
Last updated: April 30, 2012
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