Prescriptive Analytics: New Concept or Buzzword?

April 19, 2014 by Sandro Saitta · 1 Comment
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I often heard about Prescriptive Analytics recently, as the new type of analytics (in addition to Descriptive and Predictive Analytics). According to websites and whitepapers, Prescriptive Analytics is the next step after descriptive/predictive analytics. Once you get predictions, you need to prescribe actions to leverage these predictions.


I’m now wondering if this topic is really new or if it’s just a new name for something we have been doing for years. First, I wonder since people have been working on Decision Management Systems and Decision Support for years now (for example experts such as James Taylor). I remember discussing about the step “from analytics to action” years ago. Is Prescriptive Analytics the new term to name the step from analytics to knowledge in the data to knowledge pyramid?

If it’s the case, then it’s fine, but it’s not new. Who would make a prediction without any prescriptions in a data mining project (at least in industry)? In online advertising, for example, you score each visitor for each ad model. At the end, you prescribe an action (which ad to show). Without this prescription, you wouldn’t make any money at the end of the day.

In my view, most analytics projects already have a “Prescriptive Analytics” phase in order for the project to be valuable for the company. What do you think about Prescriptive Analytics? Buzzword or real new emerging concept? Feel free to share your opinion.

Two articles about Prescriptive Analytics:

Big Data Analytics: Descriptive Vs. Predictive Vs. Prescriptive
The Analytics Journey

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Data Mining Book Review: Exploring Data with RapidMiner

April 7, 2014 by Sandro Saitta · Leave a Comment
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rapidminerI recently received a short introduction to data exploration for RapidMiner, "Exploring Data with RapidMiner" by Andrew Chisholm. This short book is a tutorial for data exploration using the RapidMiner interface. It's more of a user manual than a book on data exploration. In each chapter, a quick (and general) introduction precede RapidMiner steps and… Continue reading...
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Swiss Analytics Magazine

March 27, 2014 by Sandro Saitta · Leave a Comment
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The Swiss Association for Analytics ( just launched the very first issue of the Swiss Analytics Magazine! Here is the editorial: Welcome to the very first issue of the Swiss Analytics Magazine (SAM), published by the Swiss Association for Analytics (SAA). This magazine is one of our means to achieve the association objectives. The main objective is to provide original analytics content to Swiss practitioners. In the different issues… Continue reading...
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Data Mining Book Review: Naked Statistics

March 18, 2014 by Sandro Saitta · 2 Comments
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nakedI heard about Naked Statistics, from Charles Wheelan, a few months ago. Marcel Baumgartner mentioned it on the LinkedIn group of the Swiss Statistical Society as an excellent book. So I urged to bought it...and I wasn't disappointed. Naked Statistics is a journey in the world of statistics applied to everyday challenges. The book is very readable… Continue reading... | 2 Comments
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Data Mining Book Review: Statistics – A Very Short Introduction

March 2, 2014 by Sandro Saitta · Leave a Comment
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statsintroDavid J. Hand is well known for his famous book Principles of Data Mining. He also wrote an introductory book Statistics - A Very Short Introduction. This 124 pages book is a journey in the world of statistics. Although the book is mainly for beginners, it is a refreshing reminder for statisticians and people in… Continue reading...
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Predicting Kickstarter campaign success through data mining

February 17, 2014 by Sandro Saitta · 1 Comment
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vincent-etterToday, I have the pleasure to welcome Vincent Etter, PhD student at EPFL, with a very interesting data mining project: the prediction of Kickstarter project success. Thanks for your answers Vincent. Data Mining Research: Could you introduce yourself and explain how you entered the field of data mining? Vincent Etter: I'm a PhD student in Computer and Communications Sciences at EPFL. I… Continue reading... | 1 Comment
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Think you need Hadoop? Think again

January 25, 2014 by Sandro Saitta · 5 Comments
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Today's post is written by Rick DelGado. His guest post is about the need of Hadoop. Thanks Rick for your input. In the big data buzz, Hadoop has been the big data solution of choice leaving many feeling like Hadoop is their only option for harnessing big data. However, there are many other big data options out there that offer different features than Hadoop, and may actually fit your business needs… Continue reading... | 5 Comments
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