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Education
October 25th, 2013
9:31
 

President Barack Obama

President Barack Obama

President Barack Obama addressed the students and faculty of the Pathways in Technology Early College High School (P-TECH) in Brooklyn, New York, today to spotlight the school, its teachers and administrators, the architects of the program, and its partners.

Opened in September 2011, P-TECH is a collaboration among the New York City Public Schools, The City University of New York and IBM. An open-admissions, grades 9 – 14 institution, P-TECH provides a rigorous academic and workplace skills curriculum leading to a no-cost associate degree in technology and preferential consideration for jobs at IBM. The P-TECH model has been so successful that five similar schools have opened in Chicago; four more are planned for New York City; and New York State will rollout 16 new P-TECH-model schools in 2014. Continue Reading »

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Richard Koubek, Dean of the College of Engineering, Louisiana State University

Richard Koubek, Dean of the College of Engineering, Louisiana State University

By Richard Koubek

The times of the professor working solely within the confines of campus are bygone days as we academicians embrace the practicalities of new performance standards, rapid technological advances and simple economics. 

In 1997, the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) launched a new standard that seismically shifted our educational focus away from what we teach in the classroom to what our students learn. SP LSU COE 2013Core to this initiative is the collection of feedback and input from companies who hire our students, measuring student success along learning outcomes. Continue Reading »

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Linda Sanford, IBM Senior Vice President, Enterprise Transformation

Linda Sanford, IBM Senior Vice President, Enterprise Transformation

By Linda Sanford

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s recent announcement of 16 new “early college” technology-focused high schools based on IBM’s P-TECH model has implications far beyond state borders. A national study by the Brookings Institution concludes that half of all STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) jobs are “middle skill” positions requiring postsecondary training but not a four-year degree. And the U.S. Department of Labor reports that the American economy will create 14 million new middle skill jobs over the next 10 years – on top of the 29 million jobs that exist right now. Continue Reading »

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Jeff Saperstein, Professor of Marketing, Hult International Business School

Jeff Saperstein, Professor of Marketing, Hult International Business School

By Jeff Saperstein & Hunter Hastings

Higher education has a well recognized crisis: the gap between what is taught in business schools and what is expected by managers in high growth industries of their incoming employees.

It is a chasm that leads to unemployment, underemployment, and disengagement for the Millennial workforce, and frustration for enterprises who cannot find and retain qualified employees for jobs unfilled.

Hunter Hastings, Professor of Marketing, Hult International Business School

Hunter Hastings, Professor of Marketing, Hult International Business School

Higher Education institutions tend to resist innovation. They are risk-averse, while being overly concerned with maintaining tradition. Frankly, it is easier for departments and professors to keep doing what they have been doing in prescriptive, conventional methods rather than find new ways to deliver education as a service in innovative and effective ways.

The disruptive solution is to engage students in active learning by applying the latest business research and enterprise architecture models to real business challenges. As a result of incorporating the use of social business, big data, mobility and cloud computing into the curriculum students leave prepared with the skills they’ll immediately use to service customers and collaborate with colleagues and partners in today’s global and digital economy.

This is exactly what Hult International Business School and IBM have partnered to do. Continue Reading »

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July 25th, 2013
9:45
 

Bill Liao, co-founder CoderDojo

Bill Liao, co-founder CoderDojo

By Bill Liao

The great Arthur C. Clarke once wrote that “any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” Yet in a time when nearly all human activity is reliant on the magic of computer software, entire generations of kids are not learning to program until far too late, and the dropout rate for computer science degrees is routinely 50 percent. We have a global shortage of good programmers, and many startup companies simply fail for want of decent programming talent.

I co-founded CoderDojo two years ago to address this crisis and it has had a phenomenal impact. But it needs more supporters to continue its mission. Continue Reading »

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Dr. David Sinclair, Senior Lecturer, School of Computing, Dublin City University

Dr. David Sinclair, Senior Lecturer, School of Computing, Dublin City University

By Dr. David Sinclair

What skills will tomorrow’s city leaders need?

This is a very broad question, but it has a specific set of answers. Tomorrow’s urban leaders must organize, analyze and understand the resource that is Big Data. They will need to be able to use the sea of data pouring into their systems to predict how the city will operate and then build adaptable and informed plans to deal with the inevitable disruption and change. This set of skills fall under the heading of data analytics.

It is with these skills in mind that we have designed a Data Analytics Master’s programme at Dublin City University in partnership with IBM Research Dublin. The goal of the programme is to provide future planners with a deep understanding of the issues, as well as the techniques and tools needed to explore large amounts of raw data and extract meaningful conclusions from it. With such a skill set, tomorrows’ urban leaders will be positioned to build smarter, sustainable cities. Continue Reading »

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July 8th, 2013
14:28
 

Katharyn White, Managing Partner, Central, Eastern, Western Africa, IBM

Katharyn White, Managing Partner, Central, Eastern, Western Africa, IBM

By Katharyn White

In recent months, this blog has described aspects of IBM’s commitment to Africa. I want to focus on the importance of talent in the region.

 Several years ago, I participated in an IBM initiative to bring the advantages of global integration — spanning mindset through operations — to communities, clients, and IBM employees, with a specific emphasis on Africa. We refined our view of the vital attributes of personal leadership in a global economy, expanded IBM’s Corporate Service Corps and created global teams to accelerate our understanding of, and success in, growth markets. I was given the opportunity to lead our South African team, and through this role, I saw first-hand the importance of talent. Our report, Developing global leadership: How IBM engages the workforce of a globally integrated enterprise describes that working environment and how challenges and skill gaps were addressed. 

Continue Reading »

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June 10th, 2013
8:00
 

Marek Nowicki, PhD student in computer science at University in Toruń, Poland

Marek Nowicki, PhD student in computer science at University in Toruń, Poland

Computer scientist Marek Nowicki was inspired to join IBM Research after discovering the “cool” work being done at the lab in Zurich. After applying for the IBM Great Minds Challenge, he got his opportunity. The Smarter Planet blog caught up with Marek recently to learn a little more about him, and check on his progress.

You’re doing some interesting academic work around Java and HPC. Tell us about it.

I’m a computer science PhD student studying at Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń, Poland. My thesis is about building a library called Parallel Computing in Java (PCJ). It enables Java to run successful on high performance computers (HPC). My goal is to make Java ubiquitous in High Performance Computing, which is challenging from both a technical and cultural perspective. Continue Reading »

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Takreem El-Tohamy, GM, IBM Middle East and Africa

Takreem El-Tohamy, GM, IBM Middle East and Africa

By Takreem El-Tohamy

There’s a wonderful word in Swahili that I think expresses one of the imperatives for the future of Africa. The word is “harambee.” It means pulling together, collaborating and supporting each other. I believe that one of the key factors in the ability of African countries to create sustainable and equitable economic growth will be the emergence of innovation ecosystems. Harambee perfectly captures an essential element of such ecosystems—the ability of institutions and individuals to pull together and build a mutually supportive environment.

Innovation ecosystems are complex organisms that are difficult to create yet tremendously powerful when they work. Think Silicon Valley. They require a melding of all of the capabilities of governments, businesses, financiers, universities, and individuals. Together, these organizations and individuals provide the web of support that makes it easier for startups to launch and grow quickly, and for established companies to innovate more aggressively. With that kind of support, African entrepreneurs and businesses will find it easier to produce new products and services, or even create whole new industries. You can think of an innovation ecosystem as a collective intelligence—harnessed for the good of society. Continue Reading »

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James Kobielus, Senior Program Director, Big Data Evangelist, IBM

James Kobielus, Senior Program Director, Big Data Evangelist, IBM

By James Kobielus

Big Data is a bit like our solar system. It’s a brilliant system of information and analysis that emerges from the inchoate gas, dust, rocks and crystals known as “data.” Cloud computing is the galaxy wherein the stars, rocks, and particles exist and interact.

To play this analogy out, data scientists would be the astronomers. They’re the ones who explore the spinning, interconnected, system, much of which consists of scattered matter that we lump together under the term “unstructured.”

But what exactly is a data scientist? Simply put, the data scientist is among the most important developer in Big Data. The discipline includes statistical analysts, data miners, predictive modelers, computational linguists, and other professionals whose job is to find deep insights in large, complex data sets. You can’t unlock the full value of Big Data in your business if you don’t bring together your best and brightest data scientists and give them the tools they need to do their job with maximum productivity. Continue Reading »

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