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What Lies Ahead?

Investopedia defines predictive analytics as “the use of statistics and modeling to determine future performance based on current and historical data” This process subject data to algorithms with which future predictions are generated, in the case of business, to improve profitability and in the case of countries, to improve governance.

Many such prediction models are in circulation today, we have the National Intelligence Council, the Pardee Centre for International Futures and the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, which do future projections ranging to the year 2060.

All of these predictive models use multiple variable inputs and cover vast areas of data such as politics, economics, infrastructure, human development, rule of law and many more.

As the world becomes more complex, our individual and collective cognitive ability to process complexity will become increasingly dependent on data modelling. However, this does not mitigate the effect which emotional decision-making has on the future of business or countries.

Mapping human emotions is a young science and pioneers of this science agree that some of the content and meaning of human emotions manifested in conversation, such as silences and cultural nuances, still evade modelling.

We are on the verge of the most exciting time where predictive analysis and human capabilities can merge to give us the very best forward-looking decisions of all times. May we be blessed with scientists and leaders who will responsibly explore this new frontier of human decision-making.

Article by Dr Kriel. Submitted by Mr Peter Dart

Dr Kriel holds a PhD in organisational behaviour from the University of Pretoria.

Mr Peter Dart is a long standing FIBSA member of the IOBSA

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