IE Big Data Club: Data Expedition 2017

Written on August 28, 2017 by Campus Life in Other Activities

On 2nd and 3rd June 2017, the IE Big Data Club, in partnership with the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), organized the second edition of the IE Data Expedition Challenge. The aim of the challenge was to offer multi-disciplinary teams the hands-on experience of using a real dataset to understand, define and propose solutions for a real business problem.

The Business Case

This year, the chosen topic was ‘how to use data to improve project teams collaborations by a client. Teams were tasked to use the dataset provided to analyze and report the extent to which collaboration happened during the organization’s project preparation processes.

Some aspects that participants were asked to consider while analyzing the data were:
•Levels of collaboration by teams at sector, division and country levels.
•Involvement of units in the collaboration process and their characteristics e.g. homogeneity or heterogeneity.
•Relationships between extent of collaboration, in numbers and hours, and length of time to project approval.
•Frameworks of collaboration e.g. if it happened beyond the stipulated project scope and time.

The end goal was for the data challenge participants to provide suggestions on how to strengthen beneficial collaborations identified within the client’s teams and on promoting more results-oriented performance therein.


The dataset to be used for the challenge was prepared in advance and a team of mentors and judges for the weekend event was set up. Mentors and judges, drawn from different companies, greatly enhanced the experience for the teams present at the data expedition weekend. Our mentors and judges were experts in business and technology within various industries. They hailed from IDB, Carto, The Cocktail, GMV, McKinsey & Company, Ernst & Young, BBVA Data and Analytics, Ericsson, SUNN, CBRE, Next Limit Technologies and the IE School of Human Sciences and Technology. A few days ahead of the data expedition weekend, multidisciplinary teams were constituted, participants were from various graduate programs within IE – including the Master in Business Analytics and Big Data and the International MBA – and beyond IE.  Teams included a mix of business and data science skilled members. They were expected to make creative decisions, document their hypotheses and leverage their data visualization and analytics skills to provide solutions to the challenge provided.

Data Expedition Weekend

After months of preparation and anticipation, the long awaited weekend finally arrived. IE Big Data Club and IDB officially kicked off the event on Friday 2nd June 2017 at IE’s cool co-working space in Area 31. After the teams warmed up and members knew each other a bit better, it was all systems go! Participants quickly dived into the process: brainstorming on ideas, defining hypothesis and running initial exploration on the data set. The space was abuzz with team discussions and questions. Team mentors, including the IDB online team based in Washington DC, were at hand to offer one-on-one assistance as participants navigated difficult questions and refined their ideas. It was a great first day of ideation, data crunching, fun and, off course, food to fuel the hard working sessions. After hours of initial analysis, teams defined their strategies in approaching the challenge and divided the specific tasks among themselves. The second and final day of the challenge began on a high note as teams dove deeper into the dataset, tested their hypotheses and finalized on their proposals. The mentors were more involved in supporting the participants with the detailed business and technical workings of the challenge. After a full day of intense effort, it was time for teams to submit their final outputs.  The energy and tension was palpable as the submission deadline arrived. At last, teams sent their reports, presentations and code, setting the stage for the final pitches. The judges arrived at the end of the day, ready for the assessment phase of the final outputs.  After a short break, all teams presented their findings and proposed solutions, to the judges and fellow participants.

Thereafter, there was another break as judges deliberated on the results from the pitching session. The conversations were animated as teams reflected on their different experiences during the challenge. Our club received great feedback from the participating teams. They said it was lots of fun, a great learning experience and a great opportunity for networking.

Finally, the judges brought in their verdicts, but first, some feedback. They mentioned that most teams did a great job of understanding the business case and had made an effort to link their processes and proposed solutions to the case. A key take away point was that participants needed to understand that great pitching and good data visualization skills were powerful tools in communicating with actual teams in an organization: business and technical. In a nutshell, “…keep it relevant, simple, factual, engaging and well delivered”.

Weekend Prize and Grand Prize Winners

The winning team of the IE Big Data Club Challenge weekend was Team Dataholics. Teams Insiders and Funtastic took 2nd and 3rd places respectively. The winners of the weekend challenge received  prizes from our sponsors and all participants received a certificate of participation for their amazing work. 

After the weekend event, all the submitted presentations were assessed by the IDB team for the grand prize award. Team Dataholics scooped the grand prize award – a fully sponsored round trip to present the team’s results to the IDB head office team in Washington DC. Team Elementary My Dear Watson received honourable mention for the collaboration algorithm they created.

Team Dataholics


The IE Big Data Club deeply thanks all the participants, mentors, judges and the organizers that made this year’s data expedition weekend a great success. In addition, a special thanks to all our sponsors: Inter- American Development Bank, GMV, The Cocktail, Carto, IE Campus Life, IE Careers & Talent and the IE School of Human Sciences and Technology.

See you all at the next IE Big Data Club Data Expedition!!

Mean while, enjoy this short video of this year’s data challenge weekend.

Beatrice Wairimu Murage

IE Big Data Club


The reason why I created the FMCG Club

Written on July 28, 2017 by Campus Life in Professional

Most MBA students have the same goal, a career change. The same applies to me. Last year, before coming to IE Business School, I got in contact with alumni from different intakes in order to understand what it is that makes the IMBA different and their recommendations on how to get the most out of the experience. They gave me the following relevant information to consider:

• Try not to make big changes at once. More specifically, if you are already planning on changing country and industry, at least focus on the area where you have a background. The sooner you decide on the area and industry you are interested the better, and you can begin to focus and plan the actions that will permit you to achieve your goal.

– Note: if you don’t know what your goal is, what IE calls a “soul-searcher”, remember that there is nothing wrong with that. You are going to network with a large, diverse group of people from different nationalities and background who will support you and share their experiences to help you make the right choice. Also, remember that nothing last forever and you can adapt and change your goals with hard work.

This is how I began to focus in the Consumer Goods Industry. Whilst, I do not have experience working at a FMCG company, I do have experience working with companies in the sector. But what is my motivation for FMCG? Firstly, the industry is dynamic and diverse. Secondly, innovation is a consistent process due to the need to come up with new ideas to meet and create demand focused on consumer satisfaction. Therefore, the FMCG industry changes fast and is constantly evolving with a strong focus on customer loyalty.

Now, with a goal in mind, I began to focus on the actions I needed to undertake. Firstly, I needed a better understanding of the industry and to improve my network. This lead me to check if the Business School had established any clubs related to FMCG. After finding the contact details, I applied to become a member. This was the first club I applied to, however, I felt there was something wrong because the club didn’t appear active and I didn’t receive any confirmation from the coordinators.

FMCG companies are behind the biggest brands in the world, and operate in an industry that is constantly evolving.

FMCG companies are behind the biggest brands in the world, and operate in an industry that is constantly evolving.

That been said, I went to the IE Campus Life Office to check the reason why there wasn´t any activity what I could do to get more involved, as this had become a topic that I was really excited about. The Campus Office told me that the club had been disactivated and that I should try and reactivate it by collecting 25 signatures. Therefore, I elaborated a proposal with the club purpose and gathered more than 50 signatures.

All this happened in January, during my first days in Madrid and since then we have had an average of at least one event per month, company presentations (Amazon, Nestlé and Mary Kay), having meetings, happy hour networkings and other activities. There is room for improvement and we are working to expand and be awarded with a certificate of one of the best clubs of IE Business School. Achieving this would mean creating a virtuous process for all involved.

What have I learnt from this experience?

Entrepreneurship does not only mean the creation of new ideas, as we have several examples of entrepreneurs that started new business by improving existing models. Entrepreneurship is about having an idea, developing a process and putting it into action, and to do that it is imperative to have strong engagement and teamwork.

“Vision without execution is hallucination” – Thomas Edison

Does this require extra effort and dedication? Yes, especially in the beginning. However, now we have elected coordinators and have a structured club, the purpose is shared, which is very important. This is a great start but we are still looking to improve and develop more.


Igor Souto Araujo

Linkedin Post

Portuguese version as well in another website


Nestlé Presentation

Written on July 28, 2017 by Campus Life in Other Activities

Full house! The IE FMCG Club was delighted to welcome the IE alumni chawki asmar to present and share his experience in the industry, such as being a successful candidate and key information on Nestlé, which is a world-leading company in the consumer goods industry and one of the main companies worldwide.

With a focus on the diversity presented at Nestlé, as well as at IE Business School, which reinforce how important is an experience in such a diverse environment.

#fmcg #iebusinessschool #nestle #ietookmehere #mba #ie #consumergoods #foodandbeverage #imba

Linkedin post: Igor

IE Brasil office post on social media´s: Linkedin, Facebook and Twitter


Mary Kay Presentation

Written on July 28, 2017 by Campus Life in Professional

The IE FMCG Club partnering with IE Marketing Club and IE Fashion Club, was delighted to welcome Mary Kay Inc., one of the leading cosmetic companies, at IE Business School.

Business and Human Resources representatives shared with the students their knowledge about the industry, company positioning and opportunities.

With 3.5 million Mary Kay Independent Beauty Consultants and $4 billion in global annual wholesale sales, Mary Kay is a top beauty brand and direct seller in more than 35 markets around the world.

Carin Mazaira, Alberto Hoffmann, Christoph Janke, Lisa Cheng, Flavia Leggio, Diego Lozano

#fmcg #consumergoods #marykay #iebusinessschool
Linkedin Post: Igor

IE Brasil office post on social media´s


Review of the panel discussion held by IE Energy Club and IE International Relations Club at IE

Business School, Madrid on February 7, 2017

Written by Manuel Weissenegger, Master in International Relations Candidate

As geopolitical dynamics unravel, the interrelated questions of clean energy and climate change face significant challenges. On February 7, 2017, we had the opportunity to hear the insights of Gonzalo Escribano, PhD and Lara Lázaro Touza, PhD from the Elcano Royal Institute. First and foremost, I cannot stress enough the fascinating intertwining of politics and economics that the world of energy faces. Decisions made in Washington or Brussels can ripple throughout the globe and have reverberating effects from Riyadh to Algiers. Such decisions can clearly also have dramatic effects on both clean energy and climate change. However, there are two important messages I could catch from this interesting discussion. First, there is hope out there. Second, while the news coming from Washington are certainly important, the US is not the only player in the field. In general, I was convinced that while clean energy and climate change do indeed face critical challenges, media coverage of negative events is exaggerated. Instead, we should not prematurely give up the hopes that a cleaner and more sustainable world is possible.

But what exactly did we learn? On the future of clean energy, Gonzalo Escribano pointed out what follows. First, in current geopolitical debates, energy independence is a key word. However, we should be warned. The notion of full-fledged energy independence is not only far from viable, but even undesirable. As he puts it, “it’s not bad to import renewables”, as long as the import-scheme is sufficiently diversified. A second insight focusing on the domestic level is associated with the power transfer related to renewables. Since clean energy (in most cases) needs a grid, there is a transfer of power from the owner of the source of power to the owner of the grid. This creates a “grid community”. Third, the geopolitics of energy are clearly marked by the recent OPEC deal to curb production. The members (and allies) of the cartel appear to follow through with their pledges. However, this will largely depend on how the Trump administration implements the Iran-nuclear deal. Iran would break the OPEC agreement should it face economic sanction limiting its global positioning in the oil market. This is where the fascinating dynamics of geopolitics become evident. Finally, an understated source of hope comes from the EU’s winter package presented on November 30, 2016 and entitled “Clean Energy For All Europeans”. This package could provide an effective way of diversifying European energy supply from gas to a combination of gas and renewables.

As for climate change, the situation does appear more dire. Again, the gears of geopolitics are crucial. With the US attempting to withdraw from the hallmark Paris Accord there is a lot of uncertainty. This uncertainty is not overcome by the unexpected pledge made by Xi Jinping to be a leader in the fight against climate change. Rather, this pledge appears hopeful but questionable. For Lara Lázaro the paradox in this situation is that “this time it is the markets that might safe us”. With ever-lower prices for clean energy, there are signs of hope that emissions might drop.

In conclusion, the geopolitics of clean energy and climate change should make as wary about the chance of achieving the goals set in Paris. However, we ought not give up our ambitions of making this world a cleaner and more sustainable place.

February 11, 2017

We use both our own and third-party cookies to enhance our services and to offer you the content that most suits your preferences by analysing your browsing habits. Your continued use of the site means that you accept these cookies. You may change your settings and obtain more information here. Accept