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Data science key to business growth

Data has now become the world’s most valuable resource fueling growth and change, according to a Filipino data scientist.

Erika Legara, a data scientist, said on Wednesday people continue to use data science, allowing them to understand the world better and maximize the potential of various industries.

“Data science is really a tool that…cuts across sectors. Banks, manufacturing industry, governments. As long as sector has data that can be analyzed to produce valuable insights, business value, they’re very useful. It can help improve efficiency, services, profit, minimize cost, etcetera,” she said at the Asian Forum on Enterprise for Society in Pasay City.

Legara, who also works as an academic program director for the Master of Science in Data Science (MSDS) program at Asian Institute of Management (AIM), stressed the need to equip organizations with data scientists to get value from data.

‘Data that can be analyzed to produce valuable insights and business value are very


“You need data scientists who can crunch data and who can put insights and communicate these insights so that decision makers can make data-driven decisions,” she said.

Legara cited a local project with Manila Water Company, Inc., wherein her team previously worked with artificial intelligence (AI) technology to predict the height of the water level of Angat Dam.

“They can predict it, but they wanted us to make a much earlier prediction so we use AI and with it we were able to extend the time forecast from two weeks to six months,” she said, noting this provides the company with more time to prepare.

In November, Legara also stressed the Philippines and the Southeast Asian region have to create an army of data scientists.

“Harvesting data is a data scientist’s core competency, but also equally important are the abilities to model, visualize, and turn data into actionable insights, and to pose the right questions that matter to the business,” Legara said.

She noted that despite increased demand for data science professionals, only a few schools were offering targeted training.

AIM last year introduced data science graduate degree program, the first in the country.

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