What Can Be Learnt from Experienced Data Scientists? A Case Study

Leah Riungu-Kalliosaari, Marjo Kauppinen, Tomi Männistö

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Data science has the potential to create value and deep customer insight for service and software engineering. Companies are increasingly applying data science to support their service and software development practices. The goal of our research was to investigate how data science can be applied in software development organisations. We conducted a qualitative case study with an industrial partner. We collected data through a workshop, focus group interview and feedback session. This paper presents the data science process recommended by experienced data scientists and describes the key characteristics of the process, i.e., agility and continuous learning. We also report the challenges experienced while applying the data science process in customer projects. For example, the data scientists highlighted that it is challenging to identify an essential problem and ensure that the results will be utilised. Our findings indicate that it is important to put in place an agile, iterative data science process that supports continuous learning while focusing on a real business problem to be solved. In addition, the application
of data science can be demanding and requires skills for addressing human and organisational issues.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProduct-Focused Software Process Improvement
Subtitle of host publication18th International Conference on Product-Focused Software Process Improvement, PROFES 2017, Innsbruck, Austria, November 29-December 1, 2017, proceedings
EditorsMichael Felderer, Daniel Méndez Fernández, Burak Turhan, Marcos Kalinowski, Federica Sarro, Dietmar Winkler
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9783319699264
Publication statusPublished - 30 Nov 2017
MoE publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
EventInternational Conference on Product-Focused Software Process Improvement - Innsbruck, Austria
Duration: 29 Nov 20171 Dec 2017
Conference number: 18

Publication series

Name Lecture Notes in Computer Science
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


ConferenceInternational Conference on Product-Focused Software Process Improvement
Abbreviated titlePROFES
City Innsbruck


  • data science
  • software development
  • service engineering


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