IBM Advanced Analytics Center Opens in Columbus, Ohio

By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2012-11-29

IBM Advanced Analytics Center Opens in Columbus, Ohio

IBM's opening of a first-of-a-kind Advanced Analytics Solutions Center in Columbus, Ohio, is intended to accelerate innovation and job opportunities by advancing understanding of big data and expanding analytics skills.

Big Blue said the center will create 500 new jobs and foster economic competitiveness in the region, and the U.S. broadly, by bringing together IBM researchers, software and consulting professionals with the expertise of local businesses, educational institutions and industry partners. The result will be a world-class ecosystem serving one of the fastest-growing technical disciplines, IBM said.

Moreover, IBM said it plans to use the center as an innovation hub to broaden and create new technology capabilities focused on areas such as the company’s Watson computing system, Smarter Commerce and Social Business capabilities--all of which include analytics as the key underpinnings.

As part of the effort, IBM is partnering with Ohio State University to develop new analytics course curricula at the undergraduate and graduate levels, and will provide access for students to the center's technology assets and thought leaders, in order to prepare students for high-value jobs in the data sciences.

The new center is dedicated to advancing research, development, client services and skills training in the areas of analytics, big data and cognitive computing. IBM said the new analytics jobs and economic development in the region will stretch over the next three years for a start.

“Data is a powerful natural resource that, if used wisely, can drive U.S. economic competitiveness and lead to rewarding careers in the future dedicated to building a smarter planet,” Mike Rhodin, senior vice president of IBM Software Solutions Group, said in a statement. “This center will have a tremendous amount to offer: world-class educational institutions, a highly-educated workforce, industry-leading businesses and--perhaps most important of all--will serve as the foundation of a community of innovators that will transform industries around world.”

According to IBM, Ohio is home to 27 Fortune 500 and 57 Fortune 1000 companies, as well as a burgeoning technology sector and leading academic institutions. The IBM Client Center for Advanced Analytics will offer a strong foundation for a broad public and private sector collaboration that will include Ohio State University, JobsOhio, Columbus 2020, Information Control Corp. (ICC), an IBM Premier Partner, and other Columbus-based businesses.

As part of the initiative, IBM will add as many as 500 new analytics consultants and research and development professionals to the center over three years, focused on creating new markets for Watson commercialization, Smarter Commerce and Social Business Client Capabilities.

In addition, IBM will partner with Ohio State to develop job-ready graduates through new course curriculum in its graduate and undergraduate programs. The new higher-education collaboration between IBM and Ohio State will help develop students with the high demand analytics skills necessary to drive the economy of the future.

IBM Advanced Analytics Center Opens in Columbus, Ohio

To address the need for a more analytical skilled workforce, Ohio State and IBM are collaborating on new business and technology curricula to help students and mid-career professionals gain the latest skills in analytics and prepare for high-value jobs in the future. New courses of study are in development at the undergraduate, graduate and executive education levels that will include access to the center's technology assets and thought leaders.

"In order for business leaders to solve the societal challenges of the future, they must integrate critical-thinking skills with expertise in their fields," E. Gordon Gee, Ohio State's president, said in a statement. "The ability to apply a wholly new level of analytical insights and solutions will bolster our nation's role as a competitive global leader and be the catalyst for the next frontier of economic growth."

The partnership between Ohio State and IBM is part of an ongoing effort IBM has with more than 200 other academic organizations to expand and strengthen education curricula globally to meet the growing demand for highly skilled analytics business professionals.

"Our strong collaboration with IBM will help our students across a variety of majors gain the latest skills in this burgeoning big data discipline and set them on a path to secure the high skilled jobs of the future," Christine A. Poon, dean of Ohio State's Fisher College of Business, said in a statement.

As part of its academic initiative, IBM is providing Ohio State with curriculum materials, relevant case studies, access to a wide spectrum of software solutions, IBM guest speakers and faculty awards to accelerate program development.

IBM said its new center will provide a delivery and prototype testing environment for clients to explore new ways that advanced analytics and cognitive systems can improve decision making. The center will also be connected to 200 IBM client centers globally, as well as IBM's network of eight Analytics Solution Centers with expertise in financial risk management, rail and transportation, and the specific needs of state, local and federal government organizations.

IBM has established a solid portfolio of analytics solutions, including nearly 9,000 business analytics consultants and 400 researchers around the world. IBM has secured hundreds of patents a year in analytics, and has acquired more than 30 companies to build targeted analytics and information expertise since 2005. In addition, the company continues to expand its ecosystem, which today consists of more than 27,000 business partners.

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