Keynote & Plenary Talks

Why Business Analytics includes, but is not the same as, Data Science - And why the differences matter to organizations and enterprises?

Jorge Sanz


Many organizations, including those dedicated to education or research, use these two relatively new terms without much idea of the implications that they entail. This talk will cover some concepts and market reality (beyond buzzwords) about these domains. I will illustrate with some concrete experiences what the actual work is that people end up doing in real organizations with any of these concepts. In close connection to the above, there is a remarkable (and probably, also wrong) goal of explicating and/or predicting behavior only by the use of data footprints. Whether this applies to individuals or organizations, the goal is likely an oxymoron. For certain types of systems, data may be a very close representation of the actual entity or subject being studied. When granularity goes down to the individual and the organization, the situation is not that simple.

This discourse leads to an imperative to reposition the role of social in any big data pursuit, at the risk of otherwise incurring (major) misdemeanors and potential damages to the entities or subjects of study (like in any intervention in social systems, observations and methods used -right or wrong- induce and change behavior of the subjects.


Prof. Dr. Jorge Sanz has over 30 years of applied research and consulting experience. He has specialized in banking, telecommunications, government and health care for global organizations in America, Europe and Asia. He works in operations strategy and on the application of information technology for transforming organizations. He has worked at different times in IBM, as a Director on international assignments and also, for over 15 years in the Research Division located in Silicon Valley, California.

Jorge conducts analytical modeling for business problems in companies, with applications in process innovation for front-office and back-office operations, and enterprise performance management in firms.

Jorge leads international academic and professional communities in Business Analytics, Business Informatics and Enterprise Engineering. He is a frequent key-note speaker on the interplay between business and IT in international conferences. He has been Rector of the University of St. Andrews, has held different professorial positions in the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and has also been a Visiting Professor in the University of California.

Jorge works today as Director of the Business Analytics Centre at the National University of Singapore (NUS), holds a Visiting Professor position at the NUS School of Computing and teaches Business Analytics for graduate students in NUS Business School as well. He is also the Chief Innovation Officer for Retail Banking in IBM Corporation. He actively consults for Asian organizations, European and American companies.

Jorge is Fellow of the IEEE Society.

Your Face as a Universal Passport: Digital Identity for Physical Authentication

René Mayrhofer
Head of the Institute for Networks and Security
Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria


How can we use mobile digital identity for authentication in the physical world without compromising user privacy? This central question is an underlying concern for further groundbreaking developments in many scenarios: enabling individuals to - for example - use public transport and other payment/ticketing applications, access computing resources on public terminals, or even cross country borders without carrying any form of physical identity document or specifically trusted mobile device. Moving towards such a device-free infrastructure-based authentication could be easily facilitated by centralized databases with full biometric records of all individuals, authenticating and therefore tracking people in all their interactions in the digital and physical worlds. However, such centralized tracking is not compatible with fundamental human rights to data privacy.

This keynote will outline the vision of such a future identity system and discuss technical challenges as well as architectures to realize it.


René Mayrhofer heads the Institute of Networks and Security (INS) at Johannes Kepler University Linz (JKU), Austria, and the Josef Ressel Center on User-friendly Secure Mobile Environments (u'smile). Previously, he held a full professorship for Mobile Computing at Upper Austria University of Applied Sciences, Campus Hagenberg, a guest professorship for Mobile Computing at University of Vienna, and a Marie Curie Fellowship at Lancaster University, UK. His research interests include computer security, mobile devices, network communication, and machine learning, which he brings together in his research on securing spontaneous, mobile interaction. Rene has contributed to over 60 peer-reviewed publications and is a reviewer for numerous journals and conferences. He received Dipl.-Ing. (MSc) and Dr. techn. (PhD) degrees from Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria and his Venia Docendi for Applied Computer Science from University of Vienna, Austria.