Wharton School Establishes New Sports Analytics and Business Initiative

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New initiative supported by the generosity of Julie & Ken Moelis

“With sports being a multibillion-dollar international industry that engages individuals around the globe, Wharton is uniquely capable of applying our prowess in data analytics to yield new understanding of a topic that has fascinated societies for thousands of years.” – Wharton Dean Geoff Garrett

The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania announced today the establishment of the Wharton Sports Analytics and Business Initiative (WSABI). WSABI represents an expansion of school-wide sports business activities by building on the Wharton Sports Business Initiative (WSBI), founded in 2008. The addition of sports analytics offerings dramatically expands the scope of engagement for industry, alumni, and students.

“With sports being a multibillion-dollar international industry that engages individuals around the globe, Wharton is uniquely capable of applying our prowess in data analytics to yield new understanding of a topic that has fascinated societies for thousands of years,” said Wharton Dean Geoff Garrett. “The Wharton Sports Analytics and Business Initiative will give the leading minds involved in sports – from students to owners to ‘Moneyball’ type data scientists – a ringside seat to better examine the future of sports.”

WSABI is supported by the generosity of Julie & Ken Moelis who are committed to supporting the expanding student interest in the business of sports. WSABI will be part of Analytics at Wharton, broadening the School’s focus in teaching, research, and industry engagement initiatives that use big data to improve decision-making and generate actionable business insights.

Sports business is continually evolving with the emergence of sports analytics, legalized sports betting, and esports. With WSABI, Wharton students will now have a wide range of opportunities to apply what they learn in classes and connect it to industry. WSABI will serve as the meeting point for academic research, alumni engagement and industry relationships, all within one student-focused initiative.

“Our students are incredibly enthusiastic about sports and the opportunity to transform the entire industry through analytics-driven decision-making,” said Eric Bradlow, Vice Dean for Analytics at Wharton. “The Wharton Sports Analytics and Business Initiative will prepare our students to take leadership roles translating analytics into actionable sports business insights.”

Under the leadership of Cade Massey, Wharton Practice Professor and Adi Wyner, Wharton Professor of Statistics, WSABI will offer a range of programming including:

  • Penn Sports Research Group (PSRG), a select group of undergraduate students learning statistics through the lens of sports
  • The Annual Wharton Sports Business Summit
  • WSABI University Network, which already includes the Penn baseball team and will grow across Penn schools and departments to create new applications to methods of statistics taught by faculty
  • Industry partnerships including accessing datasets from professional sports teams that allow students to work directly at the frontier of sports analytics. These partnerships will also generate internship and job opportunities for students
  • Multiple summer high school programs including Wharton Sports Business Academy and Wharton Moneyball Academy and Training Camp

About the Wharton School
Founded in 1881 as the world’s first collegiate business school, the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania is shaping the future of business by incubating ideas, driving insights, and creating leaders who change the world. With a faculty of more than 235 renowned professors, Wharton has 5,000 undergraduate, MBA, Executive MBA, and doctoral students. Each year 13,000 professionals from around the world advance their careers through Wharton Executive Education’s individual, company-customized, and online programs. More than 99,000 Wharton alumni form a powerful global network of leaders who transform business every day. For more information, visit http://www.wharton.upenn.edu.

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Caroline Pennartz
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