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21st Century Business Skills -Decision Making Skills

21st Century Decision Making Skills is part 2 of the twin minor “21st Century Business Skills”

This twin minor consists of two minors of two courses each:

●        Minor 1: 21st century sales skills

○        International Sales & Sales Management

○        Digital Marketing

●        Minor 2: 21st century decision making skills

○        Big Data

○        Model Thinking

All courses focus on problems and issues that 21st century businessmen and women face on a day‑to‑day basis.

Short of offering a deeper insight into theories and proven models and technologies, students will spend a vast amount of their time on genuine case studies and practical exercises.

As indicated by the title of this minor, the development of your business skills is equally balancing the acquisition of related business knowledge. As such, this minor is perfectly suited to young men and women who aim to get prepared for an international business environment where the proof of the pudding is in the eating.

Though they all together combine the most essential business skills, each of the courses can be followed separately from the others.



Big Data offers you an understanding of what insights big data can provide through hands-on experience with the tools and systems used by big data scientists and engineers. Through practical exercises you will be prepared to ask the right questions about data, communicate effectively with data scientists, and do basic exploration of large, complex datasets.

Special attention will be paid to:

-          Describe the Big Data landscape including examples of real world big data problems;

-          Explain the V’s of Big Data (volume, velocity, variety, veracity, valence, and value) and why each impacts data collection, monitoring, storage, analysis and reporting;

-          Get value out of Big Data by using a 5-step process to structure your analysis;

-          Identify what are and what are not big data problems and be able to recast big data problems as data science questions.


We live in a complex world with diverse people, firms, and governments whose behaviors aggregate to produce novel, unexpected phenomena. We see political uprisings, market crashes, and a never-ending array of social trends. How do we make sense of it? Models. Evidence shows that people who think with models consistently outperform those who don't. And, moreover people who think with lots of models outperform people who use only one. Models help us to better organize information - to make sense of that fire hose or hairball of data (choose your metaphor) available on the Internet. Models improve our abilities to make accurate forecasts. They help us make better decisions and adopt more effective strategies. They even can improve our ability to design institutions and procedures.

Special attention will be paid to:

-          Understand how models can provide better insight into complex problems and processes;

-          Identify which models can be of help in gaining a better understanding of social dynamics and business events;

-          Apply models to analyse social phenomena and business processes;

-          Interpret the value of data;

-          Design solutions for complex business problems.

Aanvullende informatie

How to apply big data and decision making models to make better decisions in business and society.


Though all four courses make up a logical combination of 21st Century Business Skills, any of the courses mentioned above can be taken without being enrolled for one or more of the others.

Be prepared for some algebra!

To be able to use a vast amount of time on workshops and practical trainings, students are expected to study theory and prepare (team) assignments before showing up in class.

Provided they obtain a sufficient grade and pay an additional fee, students can acquire an official certificate from external partners like Coursera.

Course codes:

·         Big Data: 34509

·         Model Thinking: CU34516


Big Data

1. Team assignment

Case study big data analysis

Weighing: 70%

Bottom grade: 5,5

2. Individual assignment 


Weighing: 30%

Bottom grade: 5,5


Model Thinking

1. Individual Online Exam (Part 1)

Sections 1-10 from the MOOC 'Model Thinking'

Weighing: 35%

Bottom grade: 5,5

2. Individual Online Exam (Part 2)

Sectiosn 11-20 from the MOOC 'Model Thinking'

Weighing: 35%

Bottom grade: 5,5

3. Group presentation

In‑class presentation about the application of a selection of models 

Weighing: 30%

Bottom grade: 5,5



No fixed, mandatory literature to be studied


No fixed, mandatory literature to be studied



  • 1x 1,5 hours lecture per week
  • 1x 3 hours seminar per week
  • 1x 3 hours presentations per week


  • 1x 1,5 hours lecture per week
  • 1x 3 hours workshop per week

1x 1,5 hours presentations per week