Data and analytics: delivering clarity at a time of great uncertainty

“Economic challenges will still make it problematic for businesses to get a full sense of what lies ahead but in order to traverse the current and post-pandemic landscape, those organisations able to make insight-driven decisions will be far more likely to prosper in the coming months and years.”

In light of this Don-Carolis, outlines three key data and analytics trends that will characterise the most forward-thinking businesses in 2021.

Quantifying the true value of ROI

“The focal point of quantifying ROI is so businesses can prioritise investment, but in reality, it can be quite hard for data and analytics initiatives. This is because some of the impacts are direct, such as time saved by automating repetitive tasks, whereas others are less tangible, for example the impact of making quicker and/or better decisions. However, this should not be a deterrent to quantifying impact, because the thought process required for the quantification can itself give benefit.

“Our opinion is before embarking on any data and analytics initiative, the range of likely benefits and business impacts should be discussed, understood and, to the extent possible, measured and quantified. This will also help the business prioritise different data and analytics initiatives. Our experience tells us investment is often mistakenly focused on the ‘visible’ elements (such as front-end dashboards), rather than the ‘behind the scenes’ elements (such as robust data management). In 2021 and beyond, successful business leaders should have their desired outcomes front and centre of any initiatives, and then build data and analytics initiatives around these to ensure a stronger ROI.”

A smarter approach to data governance

“Whilst it is imperative data is handled in a safe and secure manner, an overcautious approach can result in data being only made available to a minority of users. Good data governance is about liberating information, so it can be shared in a secure and appropriate manner. Establishing a centralised, curated and governed source of non-sensitive data and a trust-based, risk-aware data-sharing model will become increasingly vital for unlocking the benefits of data analytics. Again, having a strong CDO or dedicated data team is key to preventing a company’s data becoming kept under lock and key.”

James concludes: “There are many benefits to improving data analytics maturity levels, including improved forecasting, generating better actionable insights and heightening your understanding of competitors. To progress in these uncertain times, it is critical business leaders continue to leverage the investments made into data initiatives, in order to facilitate smarter decision making and bring clarity at a time of great uncertainty.”

Learning with — and about — AI technology

Between remote learning, more time spent at home, and working parents trying to keep their kids occupied, children across the United States have clocked in record-breaking hours of screen time during the pandemic. Much of it is supervised and curated by teachers or parents — but increasingly, kids of all ages are watching videos, playing games, and interacting with devices powered by artificial intelligence. As head of the Personal Robots group and AI Education at MIT, Media Lab Professor Cynthia Breazeal is on a mission to help this generation of young people to grow up understanding the AI they use.

At “AI Education: Research and Practice,” an Open Learning Talks event in December, Breazeal shared her vision for educating students not only about how AI works, but how to design and use it themselves — an initiative she calls AI Literacy for All. The AI Education project Breazeal is leading at MIT is a collaboration between MIT Open Learning and the Abdul Latif Jameel World Education Lab, the Media Lab, and the MIT Schwarzman College of Computing. Through research projects, hands-on activities, and scalable learning modules, Breazeal and her AI Education affiliates across MIT are creating a robust resource hub for educators, parents, and learners of all ages to understand how AI functions in different day-to-day roles, and how to approach both using and creating artificial intelligence with a basis in ethics, inclusion, and empathy.

TrueCue reveals the top data analytics priorities for 2021 and beyond Looking back over the past year, it’s clear that for many organisations, regardless of size or industry, technology was invoked to survive the crisis. Much has been reported about the rapid migration to the cloud and the move to support remote working but according to James Don-Carolis, Managing Director of TrueCue, data, and the value which can be obtained from actionable, business intelligence, often acts as the differentiator between success and failure:

by TrueCue reveals the top data analytics priorities for 2021 and beyond

At Open Learning Talks, Cynthia Breazeal and Eric Klopfer discuss artificial intelligence education.

Source; (2021)

Subscribe To Our Newsletter