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Blog Posts by Tom Davenport

CIOs can help drive business value by following the lead of high-performing companies that use advanced analytical techniques and data-driven insights to rise above their competitors.Data analytics has helped rewrite the rules of business competition, creating a growing number of…
Back in 2012 I wrote (with D.J. Patil, who went on to become the Chief Data Scientist in the White House) an article in Harvard Business Review called “Data Scientist.” Nobody remembers the title or much about the content of…
Machine learning is a great way to extract maximum predictive or categorization value from a large volume of structured data. The idea (at least for “supervised learning,” by far the most common type in business) is to train a model…
A few years ago a large insurance company decided to form a new data science group. The senior managers of the company were determined to find the best leader possible. Many were inclined to hire a prominent Ph.D. in finance…
One of the fastest-growing areas of artificial intelligence—at least if that term is defined broadly—is “robotic process automation,” a set of capabilities for the automation of digital tasks. RPA, as it is often called, has some valuable functions, but digital-centric…
In a previous piece I wrote about an MIT conference suggesting that fully autonomous vehicles are not just around the corner. In the short run, then, we’ll be riding in increasingly smart vehicles, but we humans will still be expected…
What do we call the collection of technologies that make up what we used to call “artificial intelligence?” This conundrum reminds me of a Raymond Carver short story (and book) called What We Talk About When We Talk About Love.…
There is little doubt that the United States is the most active market for cognitive technologies, but it is hardly the only one. There is also considerable interest in the technology in Europe, and a number of projects are underway…
For the many years that I have been researching IT, there has always been a clear distinction between certain types of applications. One, for example, distinguished “B to B” (business to business) applications from those for “B to C” (business…