Making Better Use of Data to Predict the Future
Making the right decisions in today's complex and interconnected world is increasingly challenging for managers and leaders, especially in areas such as global finance or the environment. Dr. Erick Delage, Canada Research Chair in Decision Making Under Uncertainty, develops models, rules and processes for decision-making software that can help leaders and managers deal with uncertainty.
When companies, governments or individuals make complex decisions, it is often impossible for them to have a perfect understanding of the likely outcomes. For instance, the 2008 financial crisis exposed our inability to predict the far-reaching impact of certain economic choices.
The good news is that new tools are constantly being developed to help us collect, store and process an ever-increasing pool of information about our operating environment. It is estimated that the volume of business data triples every two years. For example, in 2013, ebay.com accounted for 50 quadrillion bytes of data daily—all on its own.
This means as a society, we face an information paradox: there is a growing amount of information available, yet it is almost impossible to fully predict the consequences of critical decisions. The key to addressing this issue is ensuring that people making critical decisions can successfully process the information they have, and find the best balance between risks and returns.
With his research team, Delage develops cutting-edge tools that support critical decision making. These tools will make it easier for decision-makers in finance, revenue management, logistics, transportation and the environment to see the long-term impacts of their choices.