Unleashing the Power of Big Data
Today, the world has witnessed an unprecedented rise in the volume of unstructured data. Structuring the unstructured data to obtain valuable and actionable insights is a major challenge that corporations, start-ups and even the government sectors are looking to address. A complete realization of big data capabilities could potentially transform numerous sectors impacting public life and the economy; for example, the data from survey apps could convey public opinion. The idea of delivering insights into the data sourced from applications, portals or any other resource could eliminate the need for economists to depend on banks or financial institutions to understand parameters like credit growth and deficit. The possibilities of big data extend far and wide and can effect a paradigm shift in the society.
Despite its potential to be a game changer, big data analytics remains an underutilized area by economists; and it is not without reason. Firstly, conventional practices require even the minutest details in the data to be reliable and secondly, the likelihood of governments seizing control over confidential information sources. Fuelling these concerns are developments where governments in Latin America and Caribbean regions have leveraged big data resources, to expand their digital economy and combat corruption. Recently, the world bank has contemplated using big data to help nations fight poverty.
It is no exaggeration to state that big data analytics has emerged as the new pillar of strength for economic decision-making. However, the leveraging capabilities for big data depend largely on the advancements made by nations in telecommunication systems and the distribution/allocation of technology resources. While there could be instances of governments intending to restrict the usage and access to information, they are bound to change their stance for a better future. Greater participation from all stakeholders is the key for economic transformation using big data.