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Stanford GSB Launches New Executive Education Program to Help Senior Leaders Harness Big Data in Their Organizations

Stanford Graduate School of Business today unveiled its new executive education course: Big Data, Strategic Decisions: Analysis to Action. Tailored for senior-level executives, the course provides participants the framework, tools, and confidence to ask the right questions, interpret analysis, and use both to transform data into strategic decisions. The five-day course will be held Aug. 5-10, 2018, on the Stanford campus.

According to analyst firm IDC, the number of connected Internet of Things devices will reach 80 billion by 2025, creating 180 zettabytes (or 180 trillion gigabytes) of data.1 Because of this, it's becoming increasingly necessary for business leaders to know how to use data to drive growth, support decision making, and increase value to customers.

“Today, many companies are overwhelmed by data, as leaders grapple with how to harvest this information and put it to work in their company to improve the decision-making process,” says Paul Oyer, Stanford GSB, Fred H. Merrill Professor of Economics and course director. “The class is designed to help executives understand how to translate data into competitive advantage.”

Program Highlights and Applicable Objectives

Big Data, Strategic Decisions: Analysis to Action takes a unique, innovative, and practical approach to data analytics by focusing on providing a holistic and actionable learning experience. The program will include collaboration among Stanford faculty, economists, data scientists, futurists, and Silicon Valley leaders to provide participants with an understanding of:

  • Design Thinking and Agile Methodologies for Big Data: Through a series of experiential activities, executives will be immersed in the key steps of the two processes: empathy and needs finding, ideation, prototyping, developing and testing minimal viable solutions. They will leave with a toolbox to drive their own internal big data initiatives.
  • Machine Learning in Action: Machine learning describes a new generation of statistical algorithms that can be used for tasks such as image recognition or predicting customer churn. In the course, participants learn about the capabilities and limitations of machine learning, with a focus on the role of the executive.
  • Using Data to Make Better Marketing Decisions: Participants will study some of the tools and frameworks for data-driven decision making. They will learn how consumer purchase and search data can be used to support marketing decision making including, but not limited to, product concept testing, communication, and pricing. The course will also discuss frameworks that apply outside marketing.

“Data is everywhere and the implications are endless,” says Dave Weinstein, associate dean of Executive Education at Stanford GSB. “We believe that data transcends all aspects of business and are committed to playing a key role in empowering business leaders to turn insight into action and bring greater value to their organizations.”

The application period for Big Data, Strategic Decisions: Analysis to Action is now open until June 22, 2018. For more information or to apply, click here.

1. IDC, IDC FutureScape: Worldwide IT Industry 2017 Predictions, Doc # US41883016, Nov. 2016

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