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Keeping up with global demands universities in the Philippines offer business analytics

MANILA, Philippines—The country’s top universities will introduce a new Business Analytics elective for college-level business and information technology (IT) undergraduates in the coming school year amid a growing demand for jobs in the area of “big data” analysis.

“Recognizing the impending global talent shortage, the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) and IBM, with other key higher education stakeholders, sought to address this challenge,” CHEd Chair Patricia Licuanan said at the launch of the new analytics specialization subjects on Friday.

“These newly approved specialization tracks bring us a step closer to preparing our nation to capture this big global analytics market opportunity,” she added.

In a statement, the CHEd said it had accredited business analytics elective subjects for the University of the Philippines, Ateneo de Manila University, De La Salle University and the University of Santo Tomas, among others universities.

The new subjects were “passed and codeveloped in collaboration with IBM, taking into consideration the paradigm shift and growing demands of the local and international business landscapes, and are geared towards helping transform the Philippines to become more globally competitive across all industries,” the CHEd said.

As companies race to process huge volumes of data to make better and faster decisions, the global market for business analytics services is estimated to reach $160 billion by 2015, it added.

Other schools that will offer the new subjects are College of St. Benilde, Universidad de Manila, Jose Rizal University, Technological Institute of the Philippines, Batangas State University, Republic Central Colleges and Araullo University of the Phinma Education Network.

At least 22 other schools have expressed interest to offer the subjects.

Mariels Almeda Winhoffer, president and country general manager of IBM Philippines, said the Philippines is the first in the world to introduce business analytics as a profession.

She said the Philippines is poised to become an analytics education and technology center.

“Why the Philippines? Because we have the capacity, we have lots of IT students graduating every year and we have the facilities here,” she said.

“With the right academic development and professional training, the Philippines has the potential to be a leading incubator for advanced business analytics talent globally,” Winhoffer said.

In its statement, CHEd said high volume data continues to come from both structured and unstructured sources, including social media. It said organizations can leverage advanced analytics to address market uncertainty, complexity, volatility, and revenue growth.

However, according to Gartner, a world leading information technology research and advisory company, big data demand will reach 4.4 million jobs globally by 2015, but only one-third of those jobs will be filled due to a lack of trained skilled professionals globally.

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