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Dr A. Osseyran (1955) has been appointed professor of Business Analytics and Computer Science at the University of Amsterdam's (UvA) Faculty of Business and Economics.

Professor Anwar Osseyran, professor Business Analytics and Computer Science
Photo: Dirk Gillissen

Anwar Osseyran's research focuses on the impact of High-Performance Computing (HPC) and Big Data technologies on the field of science, the business sector and society. The volume of data stored is growing explosively in various areas of application. This has applied to the field of science for many years but is now increasingly evident in the business sector and in society. The explosive growth of data not only brings significant challenges in the processing, management and accessibility of data, but equally in striking the appropriate balance between application options, privacy and security, the costs of technology and sustainable business models. Enormous volumes of at times transient and often unstructured data can be analysed and utilised with Big Data applications to derive greater insights into business administration issues and to enhance current computer models. HPC combined with Big Data applications can lead to so-called disruptive innovations, or fundamental changes in business models and market players, which in turn help foster entrepreneurship and social innovation.

Osseyran's specific area of application is broad and encompasses digital healthcare services, sustainability and smart energy systems. The latter involves applying multi-modal simulations, smart agents and Big Data as a means of optimally matching sustainable energy production to energy consumption in real-time. Knowledge acquired through social media, climate and weather modelling, consumer behaviour and energy databases is used for this purpose.

Han van Dissel, dean of the Faculty of Economics and Business, is delighted with the appointment of Osseyran. ‘Anwar Osseyran can play a key role as the linchpin between economics, business administration and computer science, in the field of science and in day-to-day practice. Big Data applications in business analytics are pre-eminently of a multidisciplinary nature. Knowledge gleaned from business administration, econometrics and information science should be brought together to develop new innovative insights and solutions for business administration and other societal issues'.

Osseyran has held the position of director of SURFsara BV (formerly SARA), an organisation that supports the Dutch research and education community with innovative HPC products and services, since 2001. In 2008 he established Vancis BV, a high-tech spin-off of SARA. The company enjoyed spectacular growth under his leadership. Osseyran previously worked in a range of management roles in R&D for multinationals, including Philips, Digital Equipment and Omron. He chairs the Advisory Board of Swiss National Supercomputing Centre, and founded and chairs the Board of the Green IT Consortium Amsterdam. He is a member of the Amsterdam Climate Council, and a Board member of the Alan Turing Institute Almere and Nederland ICT, the association representing the Dutch ICT sector. He has authored and co-authored various books, including Breedband in een Wereld van Glas (Academic Service, 2005), Duurzame ICT (SDU Uitgevers, 2010), Green ICT & Energy (CRC Press, 2014), The Revolution of Big Data (Einstein Books, 2014) and Industrial Applications of High Performance Computing (CRC Press 2015). Osseyran is credited with three patents.