If you read my blog, True data about big data, in which I proposed that Zero Dark Thirty’s lead character, Maya was a near perfect example of a data scientist, you’ll understand today’s blog title. The unstated subtext of that blog was that it’s unwise to turn big data over to the IT group. Sure, you’ll need them around, but their discipline differs significantly from what’s needed. And. . . I’ve found plenty of IT execs who understand that reality.
I argued the case from my experience and knowledge about the thinking styles and knowledge base of IT and other business functions. My cognitive approach is one way to go at the issue. But Marchand and Peppard arrive at the same conclusion from still a different tack in their HBR article, entitled Why IT Fumbles Analytics. They got right to the crux of their understanding in the first paragraph:
In their quest to extract insights from the massive amounts of data now available from internal and external sources, many companies are spending heavily on IT tools and hiring data scientists. Yet most are struggling to achieve a worthwhile return. That’s because they treat their big data and analytic projects the same way they treat all IT projects, not realizing that the two are completely different animals.
What this implies is that rather than emphasizing information in the big data, information is viewed not as a resource that makes possible the design and implementation of more IT systems, but, rather as something that people themselves...