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29 QTEM students from 11 universities around the globe participated in the QTEM Data Challengefrom February to May 2018. The students were grouped in multicultural teams of 3 participants andworked together remotely on real data from AB InBev – the largest beer company in the world – orthe European Commission.

QTEM talents contributing to society

“The QTEM Data Challenge is the perfect example of the core value of the QTEM
Network. A place where students from diverse backgrounds and cultures work together
with corporate companies on advanced analytics. Throughout the challenge, I improved
drastically my analytical, interpersonal and presentational skills while having fun.”

Patrice LE, HEC Lausanne – Switzerland

2 challenges: beer sales forecasting and students’ mobility

AB InBev was a key partner for the first challenge. 20 QTEM master students used advanced analytical
techniques to forecast beer sales but also proposed new approaches. For example, one of the teams
designed an application which analyzed “feelings” behind posts on social networks as a possible
indicator of sales.

“I could explore a new field of business, on which I had minimal expertise. When the day of
the final presentation comes and you have a team of experts listening to you and
appreciating the final output, you feel grateful to have found the time for this experience.
Moreover, it is fun!”
Enrichetta Giurickovic, LUISS University – Italy

The Challenge was also interesting for the AB InBev Team, as Senthil Nathan (AB InBev Coach) pointed
out: “QDC was one such wonderful event, that provided me with an opportunity to mentor students
from diverse backgrounds on an analytical project. The curiosity of the students inspired and rekindled
the spirit of learning within me.”

9 QTEM students choose to participate in the second challenge on data from over 2 million Erasmus
exchanges.1 They had to use analytics to understand and improve student’s mobility experience.
Creativity was at the center of this challenge. The teams came up with interactive maps showing
Erasmus flows, econometric models to explain such flows and new indicators to measure the gains
from Erasmus experience.

“Having coaches from McKinsey and the European Commission actually listen to us and
guide us during this journey made us feel like we had a real impact on the future of the
youth/Erasmus Programme. It is a fantastic learning opportunity, incomparable to basic
school work projects."
Danielle Rubas, Solvay Brussels School - Belgium

A learning experience without borders

Students not only had to learn new analytical techniques for data cleaning and econometrics on
advanced tools (such as R and Python), they also had to deal with new ways of team work. They were
challenged to collaborate through distance and cultural differences and to learn from each other’s
experience and background. This learning experience is a great stepping stone for student careers in
the current world evolution, i.e. data at the center of intense globalization.

We have the finalists!

The first round of the QTEM Data Challenge is over. All teams have been evaluated by a heterogeneous
jury from both academic and business worlds.
The first, second and third places are going to be determined at a second round of competition
during the annual QTEM Analytics Conference on the 26th of October at BI Norway.

Together, we made it happen

This challenge created a success thanks to QTEM network stakeholders: corporate partners,
universities, students and alumni.
On top of AB InBev Analytics Team and Erasmus+ Programme, QTEM Alumni gave us important
support. William De Vliegher, currently working at AB InBev in Belgium, was crucial in launching the
Data Challenge, collaborating with AB InBev and evaluating students. We could also count on the great
expertise of Ruben Spruit, who launched his own company, Delph, which is located in The Netherlands
and focuses on data science, to coach and evaluate students. Finally, Mathieu Boyens, currently
working at McKinsey, helped us a lot in designing the project and coaching the students. QTEM is truly
grateful to these alumni!
In addition, QTEM benefitted from renowned professors and high-level AB InBev and European
Commission representatives to evaluate students and provide them with useful feedbacks.