MSc in Data Science: dual skills in mathematics and computer science

We are continuing our series of presentations on the new diplômes d’établissements that are financed by the UCAJedi IDEX with the MSc in Data Science. Responding to very strong company requirements, this new degree will focus on highly sought-after, combined math/computing skills. Charles Bouveyron, head of this program and Inria Chair in Data Science, presents this degree and its features.

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Data scientists and data analysts, in other words, data experts, have the most sought-after Linkedin profiles. "It is estimated that positions for data scientists in companies or in the academic sector are only being 25% filled," explains Charles Bouveyron. "Most positions are currently filled by physicists, mathematicians or computer scientists, yet it is essential that data scientists have these dual skills in math/computing to process all available data."
Today it is crucial for a company to be able to exploit all available data. "According to a study published by Google, the revenue of a company can be increased by 10% just by using its customer data" says Charles Bouveyron. "To know how to exploit one's data allows one to be ahead of competitors, and to offer new or better-adapted services." The necessity for data science specialists is also present in research laboratories where researchers need to be supported in their use of data, particularly in the fields of biology, medicine, earth and universe sciences, but also the human and social sciences.

The Université Côte d'Azur aims to become an internationally recognized center in data science and is therefore offering a training program to meet this very real need. "The advantage of launching this training program in the form of an MSc is to be able to offer this convergence and balance between math and computing over 2 years. Students will be become specialists in the mathematical techniques and computing tools necessary for the extraction of knowledge from massive amounts of data," says the director. This training program is being conducted in partnership with the Observatory of the Côte d'Azur, CNRS, Inria, and Skema and Edhec Business Schools.
In the second year, students will be able to choose between several options ranging from distributed computing for large databases and computational statistics, to financial statistics, management and marketing in partnership with the business schools. The training program provides two internship periods: one of 4 months in the first year, another for 6 months in the second year, and one of those two internships must be conducted abroad. "We have agreements with networks of foreign partner universities to offer internships in research laboratories, or in companies."
The program will combine traditional courses with hands-on sessions, where students will be able to work with real-world data from industry professionals to complete the theory courses through the practice of programming tools. The Data Science program will prepare students to apply for PhD programs, and enter research programs in the field of applied mathematics and computer science.

Inria Chair for 5 years
Charles Bouveyron is a University Professor in Statistics. Arriving at the Université Côte d'Azur in 2017, he shares his teaching and research between the JA Dieudonné laboratory and the Epione team at Inria Sophia Antipolis. Previously, he was a professor at the Université Paris Descartes where he headed the statistics team at the MAP5 laboratory (Applied Mathematics at Paris 5). He was also a member of the steering committee of the Mathematical Sciences Foundation of Paris and president of the "Statistics and Images" group of the French Society of Statistics.
The Inria Chair, held for a period of 5 years, will unite and grow the Data Sciences at the Université Côte d'Azur.


(transl. by Abby Cuttriss - UCA Office of Intl. Scientific Visibility)