The demand for Data Scientists is exploding, driven by the increasing availability of data and the advance of machine learning. Data collection and analysis have become crucial components of decision making in today’s private and public organizations and many have started to develop specialized departments for this purpose.
The ability to extract, handle, and analyze large amounts of data is therefore a key skill on today’s job market.
However, gathering and summarizing data is not enough. Data science can only improve decision making with an understanding of how choices affect outcomes. Data Scientists must therefore increasingly combine standard tools in machine learning with an understanding of the causal relationships behind the data.
The Barcelona GSE Master's Program in Data Science for Decision Making integrates key elements from Data Science and Economics to give graduates the ability to deal with all types of data and make the correct inferences from it.
Students will be trained in the use of cutting-edge machine learning methods and of statistical models that will help them to provide effective data support in the decision-making process of any organization. Students will, for example, be able to extract information from the structure of social networks, satellite images, large libraries of digitized text, read and visualize data in maps and make sense of geo-localized information and time series data. They will also be able to use this data for forecasting and evaluate different policy options or business strategies through models built on an understanding of causal relationships.
What skills and knowledge will I acquire in this program?
- Ability to provide adequate data analysis for decision-making problems in research, governments, firms, international organizations and NGOs.
- Ability to analyze the decision-making problem through the combination of applied data science and economics frameworks.
- Programming skills necessary to extract data from any source including text, images, social networks, geocodes and maps.
- Use and program cutting edge machine learning and econometric tools to analyze the resulting data.
- Gain expertise in database management and distributed processing in a cloud computing environment.
- Develop a deep understanding of the differences between correlation and causality and why this is crucial for optimal decision-making.
- Communicate data analysis results effectively through presentation and aesthetic charting skills.
- Ability to approach problems from different angles and to be aware of complementarities in knowledge on interdisciplinary teams.
All Barcelona GSE Master degrees have been recognized by the Catalan and Spanish Education authorities and within the framework of the Bologna Process (in Spanish, “Master Universitario o Master Oficial”).
The Barcelona GSE has been distinguished as a Severo Ochoa Center of Excellence in every edition of the program (2012-15; 2016-19; 2020-23)
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The Data Science for Decision Making Program is organized around four pillars:
- Statistics and Machine Learning
- Econometrics and Causal Identification
- Data Warehousing, Business Intelligence, and Text Mining
- Economics Models and Optimization for Decision-Making
In September, students are required to take two brush-up courses in Mathematics and Statistics. Students who can provide evidence of sufficient past coursework may be exempt:
- A modern crash course in intermediate Statistics and Probability
- Introduction to mathematical concepts
The goal of this Master's program is to serve two profiles:
- The applied nature of the course aims to be accessible to students that have work experience in enterprises, government or international organizations and have worked with data inside these organizations.
- The program gives recent graduates with strong analytical skills the possibility to specialize in applied data work.
Given the diverse background of our students, there are no prerequisites in either Data Science or Economics. However, students will only be able to absorb the wealth of methods that are taught with some experience of working with data, very strong quantitative skills, and some prior knowledge in Statistics.
Students will learn how to use STATA and program in Python during the Master's, but some experience in these two software packages will allow students to focus on the applications.
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- 9 months
Start dates & application deadlines
- Apply before
DisciplinesEconomics Data Science & Big Data Machine Learning View 34 other Masters in Economics in Spain
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- An undergraduate/bachelor/grado/laurea, or equivalent degree from an accredited college or university (for Bologna degrees, a minimum of 180 ECTS are required).
- A typical applicant would hold a University Diploma in Economics, Finance, Engineering, Mathematics, Statistics or Business Administration. See our Student Profile for more detailed information.
- GRE General Test
- Outstanding academic record
- Quantitative skills
- Reference letters
Candidates will also be evaluated on the following admission criteria:
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International18500 EUR/yearTuition FeeBased on the original amount of 18500 EUR per year and a duration of 9 months.
National18500 EUR/yearTuition FeeBased on the original amount of 18500 EUR per year and a duration of 9 months.
Each year, the Barcelona GSE awards around 800,000€ in merit-based financial aid to Master's students. On average, 36% of matriculated students in the cohort receive full or partial financial aid. This funding comes from generous public and private sponsors and from the Barcelona GSE's own funds.
Types of financial aid that may be offered to students include:
- Waivers for 100%, 75%, 50% and 25% of tuition fees
- A limited number of fully-funded scholarships
Financial aid will only be awarded to candidates who have an outstanding academic record. While applications are open every year until June 25, preference in funding will be given to candidates with completed applications who apply before January 15.
Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.
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Apply and win up to €10000 to cover your tuition fees.