Train convergence professionals specializing in statisticsIn the course of advancement in information technology, some unfamiliar terms are coined suddenly, only to disappear like a bubble. When a technological term stirs society, it takes a central position in the controversy. Public corporations and private companies will compete to make an investment. However, a problem arises when the issue is blown out of scope.
I am concerned that the latest buzz surrounding Big Data could be regarded as a failure. Big Data is the massive volume of data created as computer, information and communication technology develop. Government agencies have accumulated public data for decades. There is Internet search data and social network data on Facebook and Twitter. Proper use of Big Data can help government agencies better serve citizens and companies design more effective marketing strategies for consumers.
In order to make the most out of Big Data, however, we need data scientists - convergence specialists who are experts in computer, statistics and business. Developed countries are already working on boosting Big Data technology and training professionals. The Korean government is also promoting a project to realize scientific administration using Big Data. As President Park Geun-hye has emphasized the use of Big Data, various public agencies and companies have started related businesses and projects.
However, among the projects in progress, not many seem to be focusing on studying Big Data earnestly. Most of them repackage the partial use of existing data processing as Big Data analysis.
Also, it is questionable whether the programs that are inclined toward computer education can train convergence professionals specializing in statistics.
Moreover, many projects have been launched without assessment on the utility for investment. If expensive projects that require major funding yield little relevant outcome, it is a waste of taxpayers’ money for government agencies and a failed investment for companies. The Big Data buzz could fade away eventually.
By Lee Jung-jin, Professor of statistics at Soongsil University and the president of the Korea Statistical Society