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Big Data & Analytics (19CIE11035)

General information






S semester

ECTS Credits:


Teaching Staff:

Group Teacher Department Language
Esteve Almirall Mezquita Operaciones, Innovación y Data Sciences ENG


There is no doubt that we are in world in transition, new forces are transforming our organizations and our societies at a pace and depth never seen before. Artificial Intelligence (AI) and in particular Analytics together with Cloud Computing are at the front end of this revolution. In a nutshell, companies are encapsulating their process in software and they are creating new services and business models that couldn't exist before, thanks to AI & Cloud..
Digital native companies enjoy levels of productivity never seen before while startups become global in extremely short periods of time pushing existing companies to embark in Digital and Analytical transformations radically changing the way they work and operate.
This course takes a look at these forces: AI (particularly Machine Learning) and Cloud, with a direct hands-on experience on both.
The first session will be devoted to the analytical transformation. How it grows and evolves, what is the impact and the different ways that it manifests, with the use of analytics, to companies that become data driven and use analytics to grow to others that become code.
Then, a group of sessions will go deeper into AI and Machine Learning. Starting from a description and historical perspective of both to a hands-on experience in Machine Learning with BigML. You have access to a pro license simply by registering with your ESADE account.
In this group we will work with the most common Machine Learning algorithms, Clustering for processes such as customer segmentation, and data-trees, random forest for classification and regression, together with common business applications such as recommender systems.
After that, we will take a deep look at how Cloud is not only changing the Computer Departments but also the organization and economics of companies, enabling new forms of production and business models unseen before. For that we will focus on Amazon Web Services (AWS), the leading Cloud provider.
We will have a hands-on experience with the cloud. Discussing their services and doing some small labs in AWS.
To accomplish these goals, we will ask you of more effort that just coming to the sessions. This is a blended course and before coming to each session you will have pre-class lectures and/or videos that will provide you with the elements to come equipped to the session and take more advantage of it. We will discuss this pre-session material in a forum where you will have 3 pre-session questions to discuss, out of which you will have to answer 2 (around 100-200 words per response).
The evaluation will consist of a mix of group and individual projects in which you will also participate in the evaluation.

Course Learning Objectives

AI, Analytics & Cloud Computing are changing the world. Not only in terms of how organizations compete but also on how they are organized internally. Knowing the essentials of Machine Learning and Cloud is becoming very fast a requirement for anybody, as spreadsheets were in the 80's. Both are transversal technologies that impact any sector. This course is a mix between discussing the implications of AI & Cloud for organizations together with real hands on experience in Machine Learning, Visualization and Cloud Computing.

Machine Learning will be approached using BigML, therefore no coding skills are necessary. In Cloud this course will prepare you for the AWS Cloud Practitioner Certification (

The learning objectives of the course can be summarized in three:

1) Understand the Analytics & Cloud Transformation, practicing on how to drive it in both existing and new companies.

2) Understand the basics of A.I. and dive into the basics of Machine Learning, particularly clustering (segmentation) and decision trees - random forests (classification & regression). Together with that, dive into the particular case of recommenders and see how it should be adapted for every case.

3) Understand the Cloud Revolution and have a first hands-on experience in AWS, with the possibility - if desired - to take the Cloud Practitioner Certification.


1. Business in the Era of AI & Cloud

We will examine the changes that AI and Cloud are bringing to management and in general to society focusing in particular on how organizations use AI and Cloud to compete and the characteristics of competition in this new environment. The objective of this module is to understand Analytics & A.I. Transformation and how to manage it.

2. Artificial Intelligence - Machine Learning & BigML

This module will provide a deep intro to Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning introducing also the basics of the tool that we will use: BigML.

3. Presentation of First Project

Groups will present the first project on Analytics Transformation and will be evaluated with a combination of peer-to-peer and traditional evaluation.
The discussions on the presentations are as interesting as the presentations.

4. Machine Learning - Unsupervised - Clustering

This module deals with clustering and its usage for segmentation.

5. Machine Learning - Decision Trees

Decision Trees in all its variations, are probably the most used and well known family of algorithms in Machine Learning.
This module will introduce it and explore its use in classification problems.

6. Machine Learning - Decision Trees (regression) & Random Forest

This module will continue our exploration on Decision Trees with its use for regression problems. After will will go to more strong methods such as Random Forest.

7. Recommender Systems

This module will explore one of the oldest usages of A.I. in Business: Recommender Systems. It will provide an overview of the actual state of the art, discussing after an actual implementation case and practicing with the nuances of specific problems.

8. Cloud Computing

In this module we will discuss Cloud Computing and why it represents a revolution in Business. Particular attention will be devoted to the new kind of affordances that brings to both small and large companies and how they will change competition.

9. Amazon Web Services - AWS

This module will provide an intro to Amazon Web Services (AWS), the premier Cloud platform in the world, with hands-on labs.


This course is a mix of presentations, hands on exercises and challenges done in groups.

Therefore, expect videos, whitepapers, articles and a group projects.

Assessment criteria

Participation 20%
Group Project 40%
Personal Project 40%

Timetable and sections

Group Teacher Department
Esteve Almirall Mezquita Operaciones, Innovación y Data Sciences