The Future of Data ScienceSep 25, 2023
As we stand on the precipice of the digital age, it's impossible to ignore the seismic shifts occurring within numerous industries. As our world becomes increasingly data-driven, the role of data science emerges as a crucial cornerstone in this evolving landscape. Much like the rise of medical doctors during the outbreak of the plague or engineers during the industrial revolution, data science is paving its own path in our data-drenched reality.
In our growing digital era, it's evident that many industries are undergoing significant changes. As we rely more on data, the role of data science becomes increasingly central. Just as medical professionals became essential during health crises or engineers in the industrial era, data science is carving its niche in our data-informed world. If you work in data science, machine learning, artificial intelligence, or advanced analytics, you're contributing to this shift. Everyone has to start someplace, and you are more ready than you may think.
Understanding The Data Deluge
According to Vuleta (2021) and Statista (n.d.), data worldwide (stored, copied, and so on) may reach somewhere near 175 to 181 zettabytes by 2025. To put that into perspective, a zettabyte is a thousand exabytes, an exabyte is a thousand petabytes, a petabyte is a thousand terabytes, and a terabyte is a thousand megabytes. This exponential growth in raw data opens up unprecedented opportunities for data scientists.
The Rising Demand for Data Scientists
Various reliable sources, including Glassdoor, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (US BLS), and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), echo the same promising trend:
- Glassdoor lists data science as third on its list of the 50 best occupations in 2022.
- The US BLS projects a positive future for data science as an occupation.
- A 2021 survey by IEEE estimates the median salary in data science at $164,500 per year.
- These figures provide concrete evidence for the bright future data science holds in the job market.
Data Science Education on The Rise
The importance and growing demand for data science have also been reflected in the educational sector. Several universities, such as Howard University, the University of Connecticut, and the University of California, San Diego, have announced new master's degree programs in data science since 2022. More and more educational institutions are offering degrees or certificate programs in data science, indicating a surge in this field of study. This isn't limited to just the United States; international institutions are also increasingly offering data science programs.
The Transferability of Data Science Skills
What makes data science even more attractive as a career choice is the high transferability of the skills it requires. Proficiency in statistics and programming gained through a data science career can be readily applied to various other domains and industries. This flexibility offers professionals the opportunity for future career pivots and ensures that their skills remain relevant and in-demand.
Staying Ahead with Constant Evolution
As the field of data science evolves, professionals must stay abreast of modern technologies and methodologies to maintain their competitive edge. Possessing a broad set of skills and technical competencies in a data-driven environment increases a data scientist's appeal to potential employers, opening up a range of opportunities in various companies.
Global Opportunities for Data Scientists
The high global demand for data scientists offers an expansive range of options in terms of work location. For instance, citizens of the European Union can access employment in any member state. Cities like Munich, Berlin, Paris, Amsterdam, Hamburg, and Frankfurt have all been listed as top European cities to live and work in for data scientists. Similarly, data science job postings in the UK have grown 1,287% from 2013–2018, indicative of the field's rapid global expansion.
As we look towards the future, it's clear that data science, much like the rise of other critical professions, is carving out its own niche in our evolving world. The growth in data sources, burgeoning educational opportunities, high transferability of skills, and global demand all point towards a bright future for this emerging discipline. As our world continues to be shaped by data, the role of data science professionals will continue to grow, evolve, and shape the trajectory of numerous industries.
Vuleta, Branka. October 28, 2021. “How Much Data Is Created Every Day? +27 Staggering Stats.” SeedScientific. https://seedscientific. com/how-much-data-is-created-every-day/
Statista. “Volume of data/information created, captured, copied, and consumed worldwide from 2010 to 2020, with forecasts from 2021 to 2025 (in zettabytes).” Accessed October 11, 2022. Statista. www. statista.com/statistics/871513/worldwide-data-created/