“In a time where we are flooded with data we need to rethink the way we swim” Towards the end of 2012, Nyenrode University and Sogeti/VINT embarked upon a big data research project. Through structured interviews with experts in large commercial and science-driven organizations we gained valuable insight in their experience, expectations and plans for the coming years. Johan Schaap & Menno Hamburg, Nyenrode University It was the biggest IT and marketing trend in 2012, to continue in 2013 and beyond: Big Data. Only few still stubbornly refer to it as a hype that will slowly fade away. Currently, major organizations are working out proofs of concept for big data to be more valuable to their organization. No one can ignore the opportunity to extract valuable information from the variety of rapidly available data today. No doubt, there will be major breakthroughs during 2013. The solutions differ per industry, and on company level some move ahead of the pack while others deliberately stay more behind. Most interesting is the question which organization will take the lead in their industry? Three elements at this moment are crucial in finding this answer. 1. Knowledge Regarding data streams and big data sets, both developing the technology to analyze and asking the right questions dominate the current maturity phase. People that have business knowledge as well as a technical understanding seem to be most suited for the job. Such key resource already is in place in the scientific non-profit sector like governmental and non-governmental research centers since these have been working with big data for a longer period. 2. Experience Trial and error is unavoidable when applying a new concept. Many commercial organizations focus on customer behavior by doing social media analysis, in order to enhance marketing. Detecting patterns in this way is synonymous with gaining experience in refining the decisional parameters. 3. Tooling Especially when the analysis to be performed is more specific, the right tooling becomes essential. Currently, there is Hadoop in combination with dashboard software that can perform the analysis needed. For organizations that deal with industry-specific questions these solutions are limited. This is often resolved by the development of own applications, sometimes building upon or connecting to BI and data warehouse platforms.