MANILA -- The Asian Institute of Management (AIM), together with electronics corporation Acer, Inc., launched the Philippines’ first data science corporate laboratory at the AIM in Makati Thursday.

The laboratory called [email protected] (Analytics, Computing and Complex Systems) will serve as a research and development (R&D) facility that promotes data science, artificial intelligence (AI), and computational models.

[email protected] would encourage partnerships among graduate students, faculty, researchers, and other stakeholders to use technology to address issues, help businesses grow through using computing techniques.

“In businesses, we always create a lot of data, and these data have a lot of message inside. You need technology to help you understand these. You need the computing power,” Acer founder and chairman Stan Shih told the Philippine News Agency (PNA).

Shih noted that many businesses depend on computing power and storage.

The Acer, Inc. founder also noted that AI, for instance, is not limited to engineering. “It is relatively unique and technology-driven,” he said.

Acer, Inc. has provided a supercomputer for this laboratory. The Acer supercomputer has a computing speed of up to 500 teraflops and a capacity of 500 terabytes.

Shih told PNA he has been a member of AIM’s board of governors for more than 30 years.

“AIM and Acer have the same direction. We want partnerships with all stakeholders. (Also,) AIM is committed to having a new program, which is data science,” he explained.

During the launch, [email protected] executive managing director cited that AIM targets to train the next generation of data scientists. “We want to train them how to refine and convert data into information that would greatly benefit businesses, as well as communities,” Shih said.

“By enabling data scientists to work closely with domain experts, this laboratory would create a collaborative ecosystem where businesses meet data science skill sets. AIM wants to empower managers and decision-makers to make a data-driven decision,” remarked Jikyeong Kang, AIM president.

“We hope that this laboratory would help enhance the businesses’ competitiveness and their computing and modeling techniques,” she added.

Kang also highlighted that the laboratory aims to encourage public-private R&D collaboration among the academia, the industries, and the government.

Meanwhile, AIM also offers the Master of Science in Data Science (MSDS) program, which it claims to be the first formal data science Master’s program in the country.

Monterola said the new laboratory would thus provide the MSDS students an avenue for practical application. “By the time they finish this program, they’ll have a better appreciation of ‘intelligence’ linked to ‘business’,” he said. (PNA)