Fantastic (data)-Beasts and Where to Find Them: Data Scientists and Data Engineers

What it takes to be a good data scientist (and how to become one)

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The School of Athens (Raphael, 1511).
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Data Scientist’ core skills set

‘Data science is a team effort’

Moreover, if a data science team is a company priority, the data scientists have to be hired to stay and not simply on a project-base because managing big data is a marathon, not a 100 metres.

Data scientists have two DNAs

Second, data scientists come with two different DNAs: the scientific and the creative one. For this reason, they should be let free to learn and continuously study from one hand (the science side) and to create, experiment, and fail from the other (the creative side). They will never grow systematically and at a fixed pace, but they will do that organically based on their inclinations and multi-faceted nature. It is recommended to leave them with some spare time to follow their ‘scientific inspiration’.

Big Money is not all that matters

Finally, they need to be incentivized with something more than simply big money. The retention power of a good salary is indeed quite low with respect to interesting daily challenges, relevant and impactful problems to be solved, and being part of a scientific bigger community (i.e., being able to work with peers and publishing their research).

Written by

Research Lead @Balderton. Formerly @Anthemis @UCLA. All opinions are my own.

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