Maysoon El-Ahmad on May, 2018


Traditionally data has been all about reporting on historical performance and telling us what we did, but we are fast moving towards a future where data is becoming more forward-looking to predict, anticipate and advice in real time.

The sheer amount of data collected now along with the rapid improvements in computing power and sophisticated algorithms will partner to provide unimaginable opportunities for all industries, governments and individuals.

We are already starting to get a glimpse of what this new future of big data is starting to look like.

Telenav, an intelligent technology company provides connected car and advertising solutions is using data to help drivers find a parking space, predict a flat tyre, alert authorities to dangerous intersections, and most recently alerting drivers where there are discounts on fuel nearby if the fuel tank is running low. 

Pheramor, an online dating start up uses DNA and social media data to help matchmakers find their ideal partner.  DNA kits are shipped to the customer who take swabs from their cheeks and returns for sequencing. The results are combined with data including personality traits and interests gleaned from their social media profiles. The combination of this data is fed into the app generating a carousel of genetically and socially optimized potential partners in the local area.

Researchers from the University of Melbourne are conducting a study using data from phones to track the lives of patients with bipolar disorder to understand, monitor and even predict the sudden swings between their manic and depressive episodes.

Japan is trialling a predictive policing system it hopes to put in place before the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Using Artificial Intelligence, the system learns autonomously using big data including social media and criminology including data related to the time, place, weather condition, geographical condition and various other aspects of past crimes or accidents to help predict crime and likely offenders.

Built by Doctors and Data Scientists, KenSci, a machine learning company, has recently launched a project to predict end-of-life mortality and improve patient care. By analysing longitudinal health records across several different datasets and modelling diseases, the solution can help identify high cost patients for hospitals and predict end of life aimed at improving palliative care for the patient.

And finally, the latest move from China to assign every citizen a social citizen score that is publicly rated has got many heads turning. Using big data, the system will generate a score for every citizen based on their social behaviours, social interactions online, how regularly they pay their bills, to spending habits and many more. This social score will drive the basis of a person’s trustworthiness aimed at measuring and enhancing nationwide ‘trust’ and building a culture of ‘sincerity’. According to the Chinese government “It will forge a public opinion environment where keeping trust is glorious”


  • All a bit “Black Mirror”? We think so and we think there is much more to come.
  • For the first time in history, enabled by big data the world has a nervous system. We are entering an era where all our behaviours and interactions with ourselves, with each other and our environment has a voice offering insights that will transform how the world is run.
  • With real time data becoming the norm, we are fast entering an era of predictive and prevention which is vastly different to previous periods of ‘fixing’ and ‘reacting’. Companies and governments will ramp up their preventative efforts by employing and investing in ‘prevention taskforce’ teams who will detect problems and fix them before they happen. 
  • We are looking to a future with lower levels of disease, crime, traffic delays, accidents and fraud as we get smarter using data to detect patterns and predict likely future scenarios.
  • Cybercrime, however, is a threat that might bring everything to a halt, however as we get smarter using data to anticipate ‘what may happen’ even cybercrime may become a thing of the past.
  • Our increasing ability to quantify ourselves, to measure our behavior to levels we couldn’t dream about just a decade ago is a sign that things are about to get crazy – so buckle up!
Growth Mantra
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