Dr Kamal Bhattacharya

KamalOpportunities and challenges for big data in the African context

Dr Kamal Bhattacharya
Bhattacharya is an IBM Distinguished Engineer and Vice President of IBM Research – Africa. IBM’s research presence in Africa is located in Nairobi, Kenya and Johannesburg, South Africa. Researchers at the lab address key challenges of the African continent through commercially viable innovation that impact people’s lives. The lab is focused on solutions for financial inclusion, education, water, energy, digital urban renewal, healthcare and other topics. A significant emphasis is placed on the relevance of cognitive computing for the African context.

Since joining IBM in 1999, Kamal has been working on innovations in the services industry, the largest segment of the IT industry. He has held various technical and management leadership position with a focus on business transformation and IBM’s global outsourcing business. With the appointment as Director of IBM Research – Africa, he will now have worked for IBM in Europe, the US, Asia and Africa.

About the talk: Data are no longer regarded as static or stale, and its usefulness expires once the purpose for which it was collected, is achieved. Rather, data are becoming a raw material of business, a vital economic input, used to create a new form of economic value. In fact, with the right mindset, data can be cleverly reused to become a fountain of innovation and new services. The data can reveal secrets to those with the humility, the willingness, and the tools to listen. Citing many examples, this talk will elucidate the importance of big data to industry and its effect on socio-economic development within the African context.

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