Organized by the MERIDA research project, in cooperation with the Department of Quantitative Methods and Informatics of the Faculty of Economics in Osijek; The Data Science Croatia Association and the Osijek Software City held a public workshop on 30th November 2017, on Faculty of Economics from 18:00 to 20:00 called “1. Data Science Meetup Osijek “.Data science is a new area caused by the appearance of substantial amounts of data that are generated daily on the Internet and the need for intelligent processing of this data using mathematical, statistical and machine learning methods. Companies need experts who will know how to extract legitimacy from substantial amounts of data, predict whether someone is buying a product, what will they choose, where will they click etc. New professions emerge like Data Analyst, Business Analyst, Big Data Specialist and others who, besides knowing methodology, are also looking for business decision-making skills, so experts from different areas have gathered at this workshop.Živko Krstić, Master of Information Management, employed as a Big Data specialist at the British company “Crossing Technologies”, spoke about the development and application of data science in Croatia, while Davorin Vukelic, a Big Data specialist from the same company, presented the application architecture which is working with big data and demonstrated its use for intelligent recognition of positive and negative comments by social network users, which can be a significant support to companies in knowing their clients.Then, Domagoj Matijević from the Department of Mathematics of the University of Osijek gave an overview of the methods of data analytics that are being studied in teaching and research in this department through domestic and international projects.In the end, Prof.dr.sc. Marijana Zekić-Sušac showed what methods and tools she taught at the Faculty of Economics in Osijek, especially within Business Information Technology at the undergraduate and graduate level. She also presented a research project MERIDA – “Methodological framework for energy management with intelligent data analytics” funded by the Croatian Science Foundation and within which an interdisciplinary team of researchers use machine learning methods to predict energy consumption, financial savings of energy efficiency measures, as well as to simulate the supply chain with natural gas.

The attendance of 209 participants of the workshop showed that there is interest about these topics among young people. The workshop was attended mostly by students from various faculties of the University of Osijek, high school students of I. and III. gymnasiums in Osijek, employees in Osijek companies, as well as unemployed young people who might find their future job in this area. In any case, the conclusion of the workshop is that it is worth investing time in learning about intelligent data analytics methods, and this job is by no means something monotonous, but it gives a special power to handle the data that companies today need.

We would like to thank our volunteers – students of Business Informatics for their assistance in organizing this event: Marina Kladušić, Ivan Šperanda, Nikolina Raguž, Anja Pećkovski, Robert Vulić, Mateja Šćulić, Kristina Hodak.