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CORESO factsheet: Data science

What is it?

Data science is a multidisciplinary approach to collect, analyse and interpret data to understand, for instance, social phenomena. Data science as a whole is based on techniques from computer science, statistics and other fields. The combination of solid statistical modelling and computer science allows researchers to analyse huge amounts of data, both structured and unstructured.

Why should we use it?

In the past, the lack of data was often the limiting factor for research projects. Today, the world is full of data, both structured and unstructured. Data science offers an opportunity for innovative approaches to collect and process such data and to provide decision-makers with relevant information.

Where can we use it?

Data science can and should be used whenever data is available to support the decision-making process. This can be in the form of business intelligence to support and make better decisions for a company or rely on public data for policy decision-making and evaluation purposes. The COVID crisis in 2020 has impressively shown how the political decision-making process should be based on reliable, quickly available and accessible data that helps to understand the scale of the challenge ahead and can ensure fast and assertive responses to an already complex situation.

What are the challenges?

Data science is a fast-growing field where almost anybody can gather information and compute statistics relatively quick enough. The challenge here is to make sound analyses and understand what the data can tell us and more importantly to understand the limitations. Failing to understand these differences can lead to false conclusions and wrong decisions.

How we use it at CORESO?

At CORESO we combine expertise in computer science with solid and proven expertise in statistics and econometrics. This allows us to provide partners with meaningful statistics and help them identify false conclusions before making any further decision.