Interview - Davy Cielen

Managing Director of Maiton Consulting, Davy Cielen took time out during the IQPC conference on Airport Excellence to share his thoughts on his experience, his current work, and opportunities in Data Science



Davy Cielen is the managing director of Maiton Consulting and leads the Analytics team at the Brussels airport. As one of the principals of the Business Analytics Institute, Davy focuses on managing and developing data science project and solutions in various businesses and markets.

Can you give us a little background on your interest and your background in Data Science?

With pleasure. I earned my initial degrees in Economics and Commercial Engineering at Vrije University in Brussels. My initial experience in banking, retailing and then Optimately allowed me to study the evolution of information technology and its value in different business sectors. My passion and knowledge for data science grew with the field itself, first as a student and then later ias the author of two books, Introducing Data Science and HTML5 Game Development   This experience of both learning how industries work, and the role of analytics, is what data science is all about.

What opportunities do you see for Data Science in your field and market? 

Data Science allows us to focus on impacting the business. To begin with it’s a great place to be, on a team with intelligent and interesting people, and in a flat management structure where everyone can really make a difference.  The work itself is challenging because we need to continually focus on complex problems, and it tests our knowledge of people, processes, and technology. This said it’s a stimulating environment with great opportunities to build one’s career.

What is the context and the objectives of your current work?

At first glance, many wonder what links the challenges I see in running my own business, managing the team at the airport, and teaching and consulting at the Institute. Three keys tie it all together – stay healthy, happy and smart.  By healthy, apply data science to help people stay well and focused on the future. Happy in insuring a positive work life balance and putting a smile on my clients (and colleagues) faces.  Smart, in working with smart people and technologies, and helping both consumers and organizations make better decisions.  Data Science is one of the ways I can give back to my community.

What specific advice can you offer students interested in developing their data science skills today?

Though studying technology provides baseline skills, developing your knowledge of each business is what will make a difference in your future careers.  In our own company we assume that our candidates have an adequate grasp of the technologies and methodologies of Data Science, so we test their business acumen more than their specific trade knowledge. Finally, I constantly remind my colleagues that Data Science is, and always will be, a people business, you must like working with “real” people to understand both how they see their challenges and how they can leverage data to effectively grown their companies and their careers.




 In this issue :

Find that Panda

Putting AI First

How can human and machine intelligence together be leveraged to bring tangible benefits to the business?


The BAI Spring Session

The  Business Analytics Institute

In brief, the recent projects, conferences, bootcamps and publicatons of the Institute

The Business Analytics Institute

The  BAI 2019 Summer School on the Practice of Data Science

The Business Analytics Institute will once again be offering a 10-day Summer School this July 1-10 in Bayonne, France for senior undergraduate and graduate students on the Practice of Data Science

 The Ambassador Program

BAI University Consortium

Our academic members conduct research and consulting assignments with a variety of clients including IBM, NationBuilder, Oracle, SAP and SAS.

The Paradox of Trust

Partner Interview - Davy Cielen

Managing Director of Maiton Consulting, Davy Cielen took time out during the IQPC conference on Airport Excellence to share his thoughts on his experience, his current work, and opportunities in Data Science.

 Airport Excellence

Artificial Neural Networks: Man vs Machine

What exactly are ANNs, how do they work, how do they differ from other machine learning algorithms, and what are their use scenarios in data science?


This Newsletter has been created specifically for the BAI community to foster conversation around the use of analytics in improving business decision-making.