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Corporate connections

L’X and AXA launch a Chair on "Data Science for Insurance Sector"

L’X and AXA group launched a new Academic and Research Chair entitled "Data Science for Insurance Sector" that will support research done on this topic in École Polytechnique laboratories as well as academic programs.

Data science is going to drastically change the insurance industry. Through the analysis and exploitation of massive data, the possibilities opened up by Big Data will have a long-term impact on the market. Data science will allow insurance companies to offer better services individually adjusted to the uses and needs of its beneficiaries. Because it is crucial to train and attract students to those new data science jobs in the insurance sector, École Polytechnique and AXA Group, via its subsidiary AXA Global Direct, decided to collaborate on this topic.

This Chair, held by Michalis Vazirgiannis and launched on June 29, 2015, will be devoted to the development of data sciences. It aims to train and attract École Polytechnique students to the data science jobs in the insurance sector.

Training students on data sciences through various projects related to the insurance sector

The purpose of the Chair "Data Science for Insurance Sector" is twofold: it aims to support research and to promote training on data sciences, for Ingénieur Polytechnicien as well Master’s students, through various projects using new techniques (such as machine learning and risk management) in order to exploit massive data collected by insurers.

Through this Chair, AXA Global Direct and École Polytechnique will determine several topics for research projects involving machine learning and Big Data applied to issues related to the insurance sector. Students will be able to work on those projects during their Group Science Projects carried out in teams of five over an entire year, or during their research projects and internships.

An annual Data Challenge

An annual event, a "Data Challenge", will be organized as part of the Chair. This challenge will focus every year on a specific subject, such as car insurance: the students will be provided with a set of real and anonymous data on vehicles and their drivers, and their goal will be to better predict the risk of accidents. They will have to design a predictive model for the assessment of these risks. Accidents’ frequency and severity, the driver’s age, or the driving behavior will all be information used by data scientists to provide customers with tailored car insurance policies. Laureates will be awarded several prizes.

In research, the Chair on "Data Science for Insurance Sector" will support École Polytechnique laboratories by funding a professorship, as well as doctoral and post-doctoral positions to strengthen research teams working on that topic. The Chair will also host an international scientific workshop on Big Data applied to risks on social media. The purpose of this event will be to study technical and modeling solutions that could be given to a crisis involving data related to social media, in order to better understand and prevent the risks.

> Read the press release