Ph.D. in Data Science: The Math & Data Group

Center for Data Science Professors Afonso Bandeira, Joan Bruna and Carlos Fernandez-Granda tackle interdisciplinary research

Last Wednesday, CDS caught up with Professors Afonso S. Bandeira, Joan Bruna, and Carlos Fernandez-Granda to discuss two new developments that will be launching in 2017: our new Ph.D. program, and their Math & Data Group.

NYU’s Ph.D. in Data Science was created to address emerging research problems related to data science that are continually arising out of interdepartmental collaborations. From political science to linguistics, scholars in all departments are becoming increasingly reliant on data science as their research questions become more complex and wide-ranging. “We need a space for research where the core is data science and, worldwide, there just isn’t something like this — until now,” Fernandez-Granda explained.

To support the highly interdisciplinary Ph.D. in 2017, Bandeira, Bruna, and Fernandez-Granda are starting a ‘Math & Data Group’, which will focus on investigating the mathematical questions that lie behind the data science algorithms and theoretical models that make processes like medical imaging and robotics possible.

The group also hopes to start a seminar series, where experts in the field will be invited to share their research projects at the Center for Data Science. As the three of them explained, what is as equally important as building strong research groups to support the doctoral program is ensuring that the students are given the opportunity to connect with leading scholars and researchers — and amongst themselves, too. “Graduate students should feel comfortable working with each other, and what is wonderful about the interdisciplinary nature of the doctoral program is that it can spark the creation for a really diverse community of scholars,” said Bandeira, who considers the life of CDS to be the students.

Our Fifth Avenue facilities are certainly looking forward to welcoming our first Ph.D. cohort and Bandeira, Bruna, and Fernandez-Granda’s Math & Data Group in September 2017. To support the doctoral program, there are also other data-science related groups waiting to launch next year, so watch this space: there’s more exciting news to come!

Originally published at on December 14, 2016.