Executive Program – Data Science & Digital Business

Prof. Juan Manuel López-Zafra and Prof. D. Ricardo Queralt Sánchez de las Matas
Open for 2019/2020 academic year
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Big Data refers to the technologies designed to extract economic value from multiple and high-volume sources of information, both internal and external, taking advantage of the capture velocity and storage capacity. Data Science, on the other hand, makes use of the information generated in the above phase to improve the analytical possibilities to aid in decision-making. The approximation required by Data Science is much more analytical and detailed, thus allowing the trained executive to have a 360-degree view of the business and of the opportunities offered by the environment.

The European Big Data market was estimated to be worth around 4 billion euros in 2016, but if we consider the dominated European data market as a whole, in other words, all products and services companies arising from this market, this figure multiplies to 60 billion euros. The estimated value of this market in 2020 varies between 80 billion and 110 billion euros.

The CUNEF Executive Program in Data Science and Digital Business prepares current and future executives in how to manage the challenge of this information in the most efficient manner possible. From an applied perspective but without forgetting rigorousness, the participants will progressively advance from the bases of data analytics and their impact on business decisions, the different phases of data-driven project management (what to consider, what to expect, what to communicate), the risks and opportunities that challenge the current knowledge of the business (with particular emphasis in the challenges that blockchain poses in all sectors and the disruption fintechs represent), the change in the paradigm of a management based on the data and its effects on management, to the exploration of the current limits to the knowledge and the challenges of the future.

The Executive Program in Data Science and Digital Business aims to provide advanced comprehensive training in the digital transformation of the company. Commencing from a solid foundation, the participants will learn first hand from lecturers and specialist professionals in data science and digital transformation the path to follow towards the incorporation of the company into the digital world. To do so, we have first class professionals who have led different digital transformation projects in their companies. The integration of the most modern techniques in information management, data analysis, the problems in generating demand, viewing techniques or the integration of agile methodologies to resolve the problems in an efficient manner in the shortest time possible, are only a few of the issues that will be addressed. With the mind set on Data-Driven Decision Making, this program helps executives in the necessary digital transformation under development.

The program is designed as a tool of exceptional value to achieve the development of the objectives of companies and executives in order to integrate the most modern techniques that data science contributes to digital transformation. Some of the objectives are as follows:

  • Understand what Data-Driven Decision Making is and how to transform the organisation in this regard
  • Establish the fundamentals of data science as a transformational focal point for the company
  • Understand how cloud computing and distributed technologies allow resources to be managed more effectively
  • Incorporate the most modern methodologies (such as agile or design thinking) to project management
  • Establish the pillars of data governance
  • Attain the effective communication of the objectives pursued to all the parties involved in the transformation process (employees, shareholders, suppliers, clients) through the correct techniques for viewing and efficient storytelling
  • Manage human resources in the digital era
  • Resolve problems which represent an authentic bottleneck in organisations, such as the generation of demand
  • Understand how blockchain, machine learning and artificial intelligence affect the company in a digital environment.

The program is aimed at active professionals (graduates) with more than 5 years professional experience interested in implementing digital transformation in their companies.

Students satisfactorily completing and passing all the academic requirements of the program (30 ECTS) will receive the qualification in Executive Program in Data Science and Digital Business.

Technical sheet

Length of Course One academic year (February to December)
Study load 30 credits

End of Program Project

Aimed at Active professionals with at least three years’ professional experience wishing to specialise and reinforce their executive performance
Dedication Compatible with professional commitments
Class times Friday afternoons (4.30 pm to 9.30 pm)

Saturday mornings (9.30 am to 2.30 pm)

Teaching language Spanish
Working languages Spanish and English (participants must be able to actively read and work with documentation written in English)
Admissions process Analysis of CV and personal interview
Qualification Executive Program in Data Science and Digital Transformation
Complementary activities
  • Mentoring program
  • Conferences and specialised events
  • Job Bank
  • Alumni Association

The Executive Program in Data Science and Digital Business is delivered during the academic year from February to December and is part-time (compatible with professional commitments) with classes on Friday evenings and Saturday mornings with the following content structure:


Data Science and Digital Transformation 21 ECTS
Development of managerial skills 3 ECTS
End of program project 6 ECTS
Total 30 ECTS

Program complementary activities include:

  • Personalised mentoring program
  • Specialised seminars and digital meetings on current topics associated with Data Science and Digitalisation.
  • Conferences and events specialising in the current topics 

1st TERM 2nd TERM
Subject ECTS Subject ECTS
Introduction to data analytics 3 Digitalisation and company strategy 3
Data-driven project management (I) 3 Data-driven project management (II) 3
Analytics for management 3 Limits to knowledge in Data Science 3
Negotiation workshop/leadership workshop/communication workshop 3 Data science and corporate environment 3
End of program project 6
Total 12 Total 18

Learning on the CUNEF Executive Programs is based on an eminently practical methodology that considers not only the acquisition of knowledge, but also the development of interpersonal and managerial skills. The main challenges and characteristics of the CUNEF methodology are the following:

  • The training is highly personalised: the work groups are small to encourage a constant exchange of information between the lecturer of each subject and each of the participants. This continual flow of information is one of keys to the success of the executive programs
  • It develops a strong spirit of cooperation and cohesion among all the participants: all the participants carry out the different educational activities progressing in a synchronised manner, which facilitates the creation and maintenance of a lively group setting and collaborative environment. The lecturers, specialists in their respective fields, actively work to ensure the attainment of the learning objectives established for each topic. They are also responsible for ensuring the creation of a true community between the different participants, encouraging participation and dialogue.
  • An intense planning of the different activities is the main guarantee for correct learning: for each of the subjects, the lecturers plan the different activities for that week in advance.
  • Individual learning and group work: in addition to the individual weekly activities, the participants must also participate in the activities (debates, discussions, forums, mini-projects, small research activities, etc.) that are determining factors for their learning and the creation of a lively setting for the exchange of information and opinions among the different participants.
  • An evaluation system based on effort and dedication: at CUNEF, we promote learning that is based on a continuous assessment of the participant’s performance in the different subjects, measuring the participation and team work, the level of involvement in the forums, the clarity and quality in the explanation and defence of the cases, as well as the knowledge acquired and demonstrated.

During the course of the program, the participants will successively work in the following learning methodologies:

  • Classroom-based theoretical explanations, lectures and analysis of technical notes.
  • Team work for the resolution of integrated practical analyses.
  • Classroom-based practical work on cases, problems, jurisprudence and legal documentation.
  • Classroom-based oral presentations of the results of the individual study or work.
  • Simulations of court cases and proceedings, simulations of contract negotiations, judicial visits, etc.
  • Mentoring and professional guidance sessions.
  • Individual study and work, individual lectures and research.
  • Specialised seminars.

Below follows a brief description of the contents of each module: For more detailed information on the objectives, faculty, methodology, etc., you can consult the detailed program for each module.

What does Big Data mean in our everyday life? How does the volume, variety, veracity and the velocity of the information affect decision-making? In what ways can we extract value from data? These are some of the questions that are tackled in the subject, with the clear objective of understanding the sources and consequences of the information flow in the transformation of the organisation towards a culture driven by data.

  • Big Data, Data Science and Analytics: the transformation of the organisation towards Data-Driven Decision Making.
  • Predictive methods: real applications.
  • Cloud computing and the management of distributed applications.

When developing a project, the information generated during the whole process will be one of the key aspects that we must manage in order to maximise added-value. The privacy and security legal requirements are only a part of the elements to consider. The essential elements associated to the initial control of the project, the separation of the noise from the signal, the A/B tests and the benchmarks in analytics, are fundamental aspects.

  • From Data-Informed Project Management to Data-Driven Project Management.
  • Measurements for project management.
  • Data analysis.

The popularisation of access to information, with storage costs that are falling exponentially, has converted information into another commodity. Opportunities are continuously arising, with challengers in every corner of the world. The analysis of the fintech attests to this characteristic. However, the associated risks are also high and different to traditions ones. We address issues relating to specific business development, such as the generation of demand and ways in which to communicate correctly and efficiently depending on our objectives and the different scenarios.

  • The generation of demand, the bottleneck.
  • Storytelling for the effective communication of needs.
  • Viewing techniques for the description of data

We perform an in-depth analysis of how data science and information affect the business strategy. We will see how the essential concepts in data science directly affect and impact the mental structure of the managers. Correctly managing the fundamental elements of data science will allow the managers to develop two issues that are already essential: analytical thought and the digital transformation of the business culture.

  • Data governance and data quality
  • Redesigning the organisational structure and planning of change management
  • People analytics: the management of HR in the current company

The manager needs to accurately identify what results could be expected from a data science project. The concept of expected value thus becomes a fundamental focal point in analytical thought. We will identify the correct forms for evaluating decisions and we will establish the keys for setting some adequate bases for comparison, as well as the ways in which to evaluate the return and the implications in the investment in data. We will then proceed to see what form of analytical engineering allows the design of a solution based on the available data, tools and techniques.

  • Agile methodologies for project management
  • Design thinking, innovation focused on people
  • Legal aspects of digital transformation: data protection and privacy

We will explore in detail the elements that are today even more likely. The effects of blockchain (the structure of data that makes it possible to create a digital book of transactions and share it between a distributed network of computers) in the daily management of the business operations, or in Topological Data Analysis (TDA) and how this sophisticated approach for exploiting Big Data changes the way in which complex information is used, are some of the elements that will be analysed.


  • Blockchain and the change in the power structure
  • Machine learning and artificial intelligence
  • Graphs, topological analysis and dynamic pricing

We will study and analyse different success and failure stories in depth in direct relation to analytics. We will observe how the correct application of data science techniques, the development of analytical capabilities and strategy are confirmed as the fundamental drivers of business change.

We will analyse some of the keys behind the employment success of some of today’s organisations. More and more often personal skills are becoming more important than technical skills.

  • Efficient Communication and Presentations Workshop
  • Negotiation Workshop
  • Leadership Workshop

The end of program project is an essential requirement for obtaining the postgraduate qualification in the programs delivered by CUNEF.

The end of program projects form one of the most relevant learning milestones on the program as they allow the participants to develop and consolidate the knowledge and competences acquired in the different subjects and modules and apply them to the resolution of a specific problem, the analysis of a determined situation or the development of a new idea or project based on a discipline or subject intrinsically related to the purpose of the executive program, on which the student (or group of students) is enrolled. The project thus becomes an excellent nexus between specialised postgraduate training and professional life. All the projects are supervised by a project tutor who has a three-fold role: sector specialist, assessor of the technical quality of the project, and controller of the analysis process and development of the project.

CUNEF has an excellent faculty, it is one of our most important assets. Expert lecturers who will actively work alongside you during your training so that the effort, learning and conceptual projection of the participants is seen to be clearly reinforced after passing through our classes. They are lecturers who combine their teaching, research and pedagogical vocations with the professional and managerial duties in their respective areas. In the majority of cases, the executive education lecturers at CUNEF hold positions of managerial responsibility at national and international companies and institutions.

All the modules are delivered exclusively by active professionals with teaching experience. Specialists from the financial, transport, communication, human resources or consultancy sectors will deliver the different sessions, with the necessary rigour, under the coordination and supervision of the program directors, comprising data scientists with at least 10 years’ professional experience and CUNEF lecturers

Below follows some of the lecturers and teaching partners from the CUNEF Finance and Management Department. This list includes guest speakers and lecturers visiting from other national and international institutions.

Prof. Dr. Ricardo Queralt Sánchez de las Matas. Dr. Queralt is the co-director of the Masters in Data Science for Finance at CUNEF. He has a PhD in Quantitative Economics and has taught quantitative methods since 1990. He has taught at the Autonomous University of Madrid, the Francisco de Vitoria University and at the European University of Madrid. He currently teaches graduate and postgraduate courses at the University College of Financial Studies (CUNEF). He also co-directs the Summer School course Introduction to Data Science and its Applications in Business and Finance. He is also the director of the Doctorate department at the European University of Madrid for the programs in Spain and Latin America.  His professional career outside of teaching and research has always focused on the application of quantitative methods in business, excelling in the creation of econometric and forecasting models in the areas of finance, health and sport. His professional prestige has led to him being appointed as a member of the Investor Protection and Intermediaries Standing Committee of ESMA (European Securities and Markets Authority).

Prof. Dr. Juan Manuel López Zafra. Graduate in Economics and Business Science from CUNEF, has a PhD in Economic Sciences and is a licensed actuary of the Institute of Actuaries of Madrid. He is also a full professor of Statistics and Operations Research at the UCM and a lecturer at CEU San Pablo, the Pontifical University of Salamanca and ICADE, as well as being a visiting professor of the University of California, Berkeley. He is the current co-director of the Master’s program in Data Science for Finance at CUNEF and Chief Data Officer of this institution. He is also the founding member of the Statpro 2000 Clima SL consultancy that provides both information and analysis service in the area of data science and Big Data.

Prof. Dr. Eva Aguilar. Graduate in Economics and Business Science, UCM (CUNEF). PhD in Economics and Business Science. Specialist in Compensation and Benefits, Centro de Estudios Garrigues.

Prof. Dr. Daniel Berzosa. Daniel Berzosa López graduated summa cum laude in law at the Complutense University of Madrid and obtained his PhD (summa cum laude) in 2003 at the University of Bologna, where he was student of honour of the Royal College of Spain in Bologna and dean of his class. His academic maestros were Pedro de Vega († 2016) and Giuseppe de Vergottini. He has been teaching for more than 20 years, publishing and researching in the area of graduate and postgraduate teaching. He has published numerous articles in scientific magazines, is the author of a variety of books and has participated in congresses, projects and research groups at both a national and international level. In parallel he has practised law alongside José Manuel Romero Moreno and independently since 2016, advising companies and individuals on matters of special complexity, mainly in relation to the areas of corporate activities, finance, real estate, telephony services and the exploitation of consumer products.

Prof. Patricia Enríquez. Graduate in Business and Administration Management from ICADE and has a Certificate in HR Management from the Wharton Business School. She began her professional career at Accenture, and after 14 years in consultancy, she specialised in strategy and change management. She has carried out the Admission Management for several executive programs such as the Executive MBA at the Wharton Business School (University of Pennsylvania) and the IE Brown Executive MBA (IE Business School). At CUNEF she has worked in the In Company department as head of Business Development and as programs coordinator. She is currently a member of the CUNEF Management Committee and Director of International Relations and Accreditations.

Prof. Yolanda López Blanco. Graduate in Forestry from the Polytechnic University of Madrid. Diploma in Cooperative Studies from the Polytechnic University of Madrid. Complex Project Management Program at EASDE, Barcelona. Program for Management Development (PMD) at IESE School in Madrid. She has worked as a consultant at Accenture, and is currently the lecturer in Managerial Skills at CUNEF on the graduate and postgraduate programs.

Prof. JULIÁN OLIVER. Actuary. Independent consultant. Lecturer on the Master’s degree in Data Science for Finance at CUNEF.

ALBERTO GONZÁLEZ CALERO. Head of data engineering at Cabify. Graduate in telecommunications engineering. Master’s in Decision Systems Engineering – Data Science & Big Data, at the Rey Juan Carlos University.


GOYO PANADERO ILLERA. Partner and General Manager at LLORENTE & CUENCA Spain and Portugal

DAVID PUENTE. Head of Data BBVA. MBA, Columbia University

ALEJANDRO VIDAL. Data Scientist & Data Design at BBVA Data Analytics. Lecturer on Master’s in Data Science for Finance at CUNEF.

PABLO QUIROGA MARTÍN-BALMASEDA. Head of Data Governance. CDO Santander España

OSCAR BASTANCHURY. CRO, DWS Asset Management (Deutsche Bank Group)

ALMUDENA ROMÁN. General Manager of Private Banking. ING.

NOELLE ACHESON. Speaker @ Coindesk. Graduate in Applied Mathematics and Economics from the Brown University, USA.

DIEGO BODAS. Senior Data Scientist, MAPFRE. PhD in Artificial Intelligence, UCM. Lecturer on Master’s degree in Data Science for Finance at CUNEF.

GABRIEL VALVERDE. Head Data Scientist at Bankinter. Lecturer on the Master’s in Data Science for Finance at CUNEF.  Studying a PhD in Mathematical Engineering, Statistics and Operations Research Development of Expert Systems with Functional Programming and Big Data Methodology. Master’s in Mathematical Engineering, Statistics and Operations Research. Application of optimisation techniques and Big Data to the problem of searching for homologies on biological data bases. Graduate in Work Sciences Statistics. Graduate in Mathematics.

JOSÉ ANTONIO RUBIO. Director of digital solutions at the Indra (Minsait) digital unit and member of the Indra innovation committee.

JUAN MANUEL ZANÓN. Minsait. Lecturer on the Master’s in Data Science for Finance at CUNEF. Executive with a consistent and extensive experience in construction, development and management of CRM (Customer Relationship Management) integrated systems. With proven experience in the application of trade and statistical models that lead to a better customer relationship, to high retention levels and subsequently the greater profitability of all channels. He has extensive knowledge of the financial sector, with vast and solid experience working with people.

CARLOS MORÓN. Minsait. Partner, Financial Services.

CUNEF maintains a very close and active relationship with the business and professional environment. The Careers Service actively manages the company work experience programs, job offers, as well as the organisation of complementary seminars and activities, the main aim of which is to provide CUNEF students with all the necessary tools and skills, and also the best possible opportunities, to facilitate their incorporation into their first job and improve their professional development.

CUNEF students have the option to participate in some of the following professional training activities:

  • CUNEF jobs forum Every year, companies and institutions from different economic and business sectors participate in the jobs forum organised by CUNEF. It provides students and companies the perfect framework for exchanging experiences and discovering the details of all the processes involved in young university graduates starting their first jobs.
  • Company presentations and on-campus selection processes.
  • Companies from the legal, financial, consultancy, auditing and investment banking sectors frequently carry out election processes, presentations, specific seminars, etc., all developed in conjunction with the Careers Service and specially aimed at CUNEF graduates and postgraduates.
  • Practical Seminars and Activities for professional purposes. Participants will also be able to participate in a variety of seminars and workshops aimed at improving their specialised knowledge and competences for their professional life
  • Job Bank. Together with the CUNEF Alumni Association, CUNEF manages the offers of employment that are regularly issued by companies and institutions.

[1] Las prácticas profesionales (600 horas como mínimo) se realizan, preferentemente, en empresas o instituciones con las que se haya firmado el correspondiente convenio de cooperación educativa. Para su realización CUNEF dispone de una amplia relación de convenios de cooperación educativa con instituciones, despachos, entidades y empresas de diferentes sectores industriales. En todo caso, dónde se realizan las prácticas depende de los convenios que se encuentran vigentes en cada momento, así como de las convocatorias realizadas por las empresas e instituciones colaboradoras. Así como de los criterios establecidos en los procesos de selección por cada despacho, empresa, o institución en cada momento. CUNEF no decide quién y a dónde, sino que son los despachos, empresas o instituciones los que lo hacen. Por tanto, la responsabilidad de la consecución de la empresa o institución en la que los alumnos realizan las prácticas recae en ellos. Eso sí con el apoyo y asesoramiento activo de CUNEF. Eventualmente, los alumnos podrán solicitar la convalidación de la asignatura de prácticas en el caso de acreditar experiencia profesional, o prácticas profesionales, realizadas previamente.

During the year of the Master’s, the day to day teaching activities are complemented with another series of activities so that the participants expand their knowledge, reinforce their professional direction, experiment in the professional environment or, gauge initiatives and proposals developed by the leading experts in the professional world of finance. The Program also includes the following complementary activities:

  • The “Passport to your future” Professional Guidance Program: a program where consultants with extensive experience in selection processes, accompany and help participants on the Masters in finance programs strengthen their professional performance. The program includes three types of activities:
  • Practical Workshops during which the participants have the opportunity to know first hand from the experts in selection processes key aspects such as: the guidelines for writing and presenting your CV and the Presentation Letter, where and how to look for employment opportunities, how to tackle the different selection processes that companies carry out and how to know your strengths and your areas for improvement, all with the aim of demonstrating a competitive advantage in the market, etc.
  • Meetings with professionals of recognised prestige in their respective areas, who will first hand present the market where the participants will perform their professional activity, as well as the most sought after professional profiles, for which positions and the different alternatives that the companies in their sector offer.
  • Mentoring sessions in which the mentors offer the participants their knowledge in order to contribute to the future professional achievement of the participants on the CUNEF Master programs.
  • Seminars – Practical Workshops and Conferences: during the masters course a variety of specialisation seminars and practical workshops will be organised, as well as conferences, working breakfasts, presentations, etc., which aim to provide participants with access to specialised knowledge, experiences, initiatives and new projects presented by professional experts, who are leaders in their respective fields.

CUNEF’s executive programs are designed to help participants confidently face the new challenges and demands of the current professional environment, characterised by change and continuous innovation, the inevitable presence of new technologies, and global competition. The current managerial setting requires specially trained professionals, with solid capacities for economic, financial and strategic analysis, with the wisdom to measure, analyse, forecast and control risk in its infinite manifestations. With an international outlook and focus, versatile and with leadership and communication skills to mobilise and form multidisciplinary teams. Committed to the generation of economic value, while remaining involved in satisfying the expectations of their stakeholders. And lastly, with values and principles that are simple, but not always frequent: transparency, honesty, professionalism, dedication, commitment, etc.

The knowledge and skills that Executive Program participants will develop include:

  • The development of a global mentality that allows participants to dominate and integrate all functional and strategic aspects of their managerial performance, with a special emphasis on the technological and economic-financial aspects.
  • Reinforcement of the capacity for analysis, planning and solving the main challenges faced by managers and professionals in the corporate and financial sector.
  • Consolidation and development of managerial leadership capabilities, efficiency in organisational actions and in the implementation of complex, multidisciplinary and demanding projects and initiatives.
  • Reinforcement of the capacity for professional performance in work teams comprising people with different academic, geographic, professional and cultural backgrounds.
  • Increased communication, presentation and persuasion skills before different audiences and audits.
  • Development of knowledge and skills for the development of projects and decision-making.
  • Consolidation of the capacity for professional progress and development, as well as versatility and adaptation to new environments, new projects and new challenges.

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