Alex Pentland

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Big Data’s Travails Don’t Mean It’s Derailed

Executives are growing dismissive of Big Data’s value. Even the best companies can struggle to get good results from their data. But data isn’t getting smaller, it’s getting much, much larger. Corporate executives should look at what’s emerging from universities like MIT, where researchers are beginning to get answers to longstanding big questions in healthcare, public policy and finance.

Image courtesy of Flickr user Mike Licht,
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The Emergence of the Extra-Rational Manager

Big Data is often associated with big numbers, but less often with a big picture. The basic question — How can increasing the quantity, velocity and variety of captured data really impact how people manage? — can go unanswered. But in a MIT Sloan Executive Education course Big Data: Making Complex Things Simpler, MIT professors Erik Brynjolfsson and Alex Pentland offer that big picture view of the economic, societal and managerial transformations that they see on the horizon.

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“Madness of Crowds” or “Wisdom of Groups”?

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Last October, my colleague Martha Mangelsdorf wrote a blog post about a report published in Science on the collective intelligence that emerges when groups work together.

Co-authored by MIT’s Thomas W. Malone, Alexander Pentland, and Nada Hashmi, along with Anita Williams Woolley of Carnegie-Mellon and Christopher F.

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