The Leadership Challenge with Data Analytics (LCDA) 2020 fall edition has two winning teams this year: ING Spain and Erasmus University Rotterdam. An expert jury of both academics and businesspeople considered their use case pitches to be top-notch. The chairperson of the jury, Associate Professor Dr. Jan van Dalen, told the participating teams that never before the jury was forced to appoint two winners. He praised in particular the ethics-by-design approach of both organisations. “Ethics and accountability are two important aspects of responsible use of data”, said Dr. van Dalen. “Both ING Spain and the Erasmus University Rotterdam demonstrated their understanding of this very well.”

The LCDA programme is a holistic training programme enabling participating teams to get up to date on the various aspects of AI and data analytics. They learn to apply data analytics technologies and AI, to improve their business and communication skills, and to boost their understanding of privacy, security, ethics and accountability. To demonstrate their newly acquired knowledge and to practice their skills, the teams have to turn a company challenge into a proof of concept using real data from their own organisation and pitch their use case to an expert jury.

The 2020 fall edition counted five teams from six different organisations. A total of 27 professionals from Anchorman, Erasmus University Rotterdam, ING Spain, The City of Rotterdam, TBI / Croonwolter & Dros, and Quint finalised the programme 28 January 2021. Over a period of four months, they diligently worked on their own use cases through a learning-by-doing approach and coached by both top academic coaches and expert business consultants.

Two winning data analytics use cases

“It was an enriching and useful experience,” said Santiago Gil Begué, a data scientist at ING Madrid Analytics Hub, Spain. He added: “The Leadership Challenge in Data Analytics provided our team with the proper tools and coaching to create one of the winning data analytics use cases.” The ING team consisted of Santiago Gil Begué, Alberto Soriano Gómez, Carmen Nacarino Mingarro, Francisco Javier Ocáriz Gallego and Jose Ángel García. They worked on a Know Your Customer case using advanced analytics techniques to identify Financial Economic Crime in transactional client data while abiding by ethical guidelines and GDPR requirements.

The Erasmus team consisted of Mathieu van Kooten, Wilco te Winkel, Tung Tung Chan, Joost Bengsch and Jorrit Smit, and worked on a use case to demonstrate its societal impact using the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) as a guiding framework. Academic publications were analysed using a natural language processing model. “A structured analyses and clear visualizations helped us to demonstrate our social impact with respect to the SDGs,” said Mathieu van Kooten of the Erasmus team. “We will use the feedback from the programme to give recommendations to our organisation on how to further institutionalize the use of the dashboard and strengthen our societal impact”.

The teams pitched their use cases to the jury in the presence of their sponsoring executives. The jury praised the high quality of all teams and had a daunting task to proclaim a winner. The ING team was awarded for its systematic business process approach, clever use of data and advanced application of analytics. The EUR team was awarded for excellent visualization and the clear impact on the organization. The other use cases were equally of high quality and the jury decided not to appoint a
runner up.

An expert jury

The jury consisted of the following academic members: Professor Dr. Ir. Eric van Heck, Professor Dr. Peter Vervest, Associate Professor Dr. Jan van Dalen (chairperson), Associate Professor Dr. Rodrigo Bello, Associate Professor Dr. Aurelie Lemmens, Associate Professor Dr. Dion Bongaerts; and the business members: Robin Kroonenberg (Yacht) and Rob Lankveld (Quint), Peter Kuyper (Quint) and Koen Rozendaal (Quint).

The programme

The Leadership Challenges with Data Analytics programme is an international programme aimed at multidisciplinary teams from public and private organisations. It presents a holistic overview of the most relevant aspects of data analytics and the use of AI. Expert insights include amongst others the opportunities of Artificial Intelligence to generate new societal value and new business models, specific technologies to support data science, how to deal with ethics around data and the use of algorithms
and how to transition the organisation to reap the benefits from data analytics. Additionally, participants acquire hands-on data analytical skills when developing a challenging use case using real data from their own organisation.

The programme is offered by the Erasmus Centre for Data Analytics and is held twice a year to help prepare organisations hands-on for a data-driven future. More information about The Erasmus Centre for Data Analytics and the Leadership Challenge with Data Analytics programme can be found on