“Data is the new oil”, is what Clive Humby said in 2006 and that is what we at Great Lakes Institute of Management, Gurgaon, believe. Seeking an opportunity to give our beloved Jaguars, the PGDM class of 2018-20, direct exposure to the Data Analytics industry and the possible roles they can play in it, we played host to Mr. Abhimanyu Dasgupta, Head of Science Based Services, Deloitte Analytics & Cognitive and Mr. Samidh Chatterjee Manager in the Applied AI group in Deloitte India (Offices of the US).
Mr. Abhimanyu Dasgupta, specializes in the design, development and deployment of data science algorithms across Insurance and various other sectors globally. He began his journey with Deloitte 13 years ago and has led engagement teams in driving end-to-end data science solutions for leading firms. He has contributed to several industries and data science forums through his points of view, speaking engagements, articles and patents. He is recognized as one of India’s top 10 data scientists by Analytics India Magazine, 2016.
Mr. Samidh Chatterjee, Manager in the Applied Artificial Intelligence group in Deloitte US-India office at Gurgaon. Mr. Samidh leads the technical team in client projects, and is also one of the mentors in the team for junior as well as senior level folks. Before joining Deloitte, Mr. Samidh used to work for HERE Technologies at their R&D office in Mumbai. Prior to HERE, Samidh was based out of the US and Europe where he worked for Xerox Research as well as in algorithmic trading industry followed by multiple start-ups in the field of location analytics, digital marketing and digital advertisement. He has a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.), Computer Science (Experimental Algorithms & Computational Geometry) from Florida State University.
The excitement in the room was tangible after the guests were introduced, as the Jaguars realised they were being addressed by two of the top Data Analysts in the country. Over the next hour, our guests enthralled our Jaguars by helping them understand the need of analytics, how it is being used in consulting industry with some real-life implementation examples and finally by explaining the roles aspiring data analysts can play in this industry.
Mr. Abhimanyu started the session with the question, “What is Analytics?” for the clique. He then went on to ask the crowd to guess the population of San Francisco given that the population of New York is something around 8.5 million. Our Jaguars understood the possibility of a catch, to which Mr. Abhimanyu said, “Humans are heavily biased in their decision making. So, we need analytics to get actionable insights from data and take decisions without any bias. Data science is a business revolution and in turn changing the way we live, work and enjoy our lives”.
“It’s not to say equations can do a better job than experts, it’s about them (equation and experts) working together, proving to be more powerful than just one of them in isolation” stated Mr Abhimanyu. Connecting with the young audience with references from the movie Moneyball, Mr. Abhimanyu tried to drive home the above point. Election campaigns, identifying diseases using analytics and helping doctors in diagnosis and treatment were some of the other examples, all of which supported the fact that data analytics is a tool just like many others and it is about how the tool is used to achieve desired goals. He also explained the concept of General AI, Narrow AI, Cognitive Analytics, Intelligent Automation and RPA, stating that humans right now are somewhere in between the Narrow AI and Cognitive Analytics, General AI being one that is comparable to Skynet from the famous Terminator movies.
Bringing a real-life example to the table, Mr. Samidh explained one of his implementations of analytics for a large telecom provider in US. The project basically aimed at augmenting human supervision with analytics. He also touched upon the biggest challenge chat-bots face, the one where they lack the emotional quotient required to hold meaningful conversations with human beings. Another real-life analytics example shared was identifying the purity of oil by extracting information in real time from the acoustic signals generated during the extraction of oil. This is where the Jaguars’ minds were blown by the amazingly intuitive way of judging the purity of oil by analyzing the sound it makes in a pipe while being pumped out of the ground, practically reducing the time taken to confirm the purity of Oil from several weeks to instantaneous.
To conclude the lecture, our guests drew a clear picture of the skills needed to become a data scientist of tomorrow. Mr. Abhimanyu highlighted that to become a Data analyst the three basic skills required are Statistical/Quantitative knowledge, Coding, and Business Understanding.
The floor was then opened to questions and discussions flowed from the implementation problems of cognitive analytics, business consulting to the coming age of analytics. The audience was awed by the depth of the session and by the presence of a stalwart of Indian analytics zeal. Indeed, a truly remarkable afternoon to remember.
Indrajeet Vadgama & Emmanuel Swain, PGDM Class of 2020 “Jaguars”
Great Lakes Institute of Management, Gurgaon