Press Release

The École polytechnique, Keyrus, Orange and Thales create a chair to train Data Scientists.

  • #Data Intelligence
  • #Science and Research
  • #Big Data Analytics


The Secretary of State for Higher Education and Research, Geneviève Fioraso, this morning sponsored the signing of the " Data Scientist " chair created by the École polytechnique, Keyrus, Orange and Thales, and run by the École polytechnique Foundation. The purpose of this chair is to support training programmes in data sciences applied to Big Data in order to meet the growing needs of businesses.


With the explosion in the volume of data, Big Data has become a technological, economic and organizational challenge for businesses. According to the firm Transparency Market Research, revenues from the Big Data market should see annual growth close to the 40% level and go from 8.9 billion dollars in 2014 to 24.6 billion dollars in 2016. In France, the Big Data market will amount to nearly 9 billion euros in 2020 and more than 130,000 jobs*. At a time when businesses are faced with a shortage of specialists in Big Data, the Data Scientist chair will actively support the development of this sector of education and research within the École polytechnique.


Training the next generation of " Data Scientists "

The purpose of the chair is to support training programs in data sciences applied to " Big Data " through engineering training, jointly approved between the École polytechnique and Télécom ParisTech, so as to create a new recruitment pool for businesses. The chair will also support on-the-job training intended for working professionals. The teaching staff of this chair will include a professor-researcher and a systems engineer taking care of the IT infrastructure required for this type of training. The sponsoring partners Keyrus, Thales and Orange will offer training placements and will be involved in the training programs, and they will also be able to grant scholarships and participate in award presentations.


A multidisciplinary approach

The purpose of the chair is also to encourage innovative and original research in data sciences applied to Big Data. The work associated with the chair will benefit from strong collaboration between IT specialists, applied mathematicians and players in the economic world.  


The research activities encouraged by the chair will concern the development of efficient algorithms in a multidisciplinary approach. The "Data Scientist" Chair's work will rely on the Centre for Applied Mathematics (Centre de Mathématiques Appliquées/CMAP) at the École polytechnique and the École polytechnique IT Laboratory (Laboratoire d'informatique de l'X (École polytechnique )/ LIX).


Eric Cohen, President and CEO of Keyrus : " We are very proud to have carried forward and supported this major initiative hatched within the Keyrus Group. Our expertise in processing and bringing out the value of data, associated with our knowledge of the ecosystem of Big Data technologies, has enabled us to detect very early on the necessity of recruiting new profiles of candidates who are at the same time scientific and technical and who are able to meet the challenge of Big Data. To achieve this, we will henceforth be supporting the excellence training at the École polytechnique, future " Data Scientists " for us and for our clients in 15 countries ".


According to Marko Erman, Technical Director at Thales : " Thales is a major player in Business Intelligence IT, data protection and the fully-secure processing of massive data (Big Data) for its clients in the defence, security, aeronautical, space and transport industries. For Thales, this agreement enables the creation of a new stream of specialized engineers capable of making the link between this new technology and the needs of the market. This is a profile which does not currently exist and which corresponds exactly to what businesses want. This chair is a fine example of collaboration between the academic world and that of industry, promoting research, innovation and employment. "


Commenting on the creation of this chair, Bruno Mettling, Deputy CEO in charge of Human Resources at Orange, declared: " We are proud to be a partner of this chair and to thereby participate in training the future generation of data scientists which will enable technological and innovative businesses like Orange to meet the substantial challenge of developing data networks which is at the heart of the new digital economy. "


* Stage point on the 34 plans for the new industrial France - July 2014