The growing use of big data and analytics is creating opportunities for strategic business change and innovation and also strong demand for the skills and experience necessary to thrive in the digital economy.
In Analytics Lab (A-Lab), student teams select and deliver a project using analytics, machine learning, or other digital technologies to solve business problems.
Each project presents unique and specific challenges and includes access to a full dataset. Projects fit in a variety of industries and sectors and address a diversity of advanced problem types. In the first three years of the course, project sponsors included Amazon, Boston Public Schools, Dell Services, eBay, Gates Foundation, GE Transportation, IBM Watson, LinkedIn, MasterCard, Nasdaq, and others.
A-Lab is open by application only (accessible on the course website in May) to students with relevant coursework or experience in analytics, statistics, computer science, management, and economics. Teams are matched to projects in September and final presentations occur in December. Mentors are assigned to each team.
Class rosters from previous years have been comprised of students from a variety of programs including MBA, EMBA, Sloan Fellows, MFin, SDM, IDM, LGO, ORC, MSMS, EECS, and Urban Studies. Analytics Lab is also a required course for all students in the MBAn program.
The class size will accommodate as many as 25 projects in the Fall of 2017.
The course is presented by the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy and led by its faculty Erik Brynjolfsson and Sinan Aral.