BLOOMINGTON - A $3 million gift from Chicago-based consulting and accounting firm Grant Thornton LLP will establish a new institute on the Indiana University Bloomington campus. The university says the Grant Thornton Institute for Data Exploration for Risk Assessment and Management, or GT-IDEA, will span the IU Kelley School of Business, School of Public and Environmental Affairs, and School of Informatics, Computing and Engineering.

Students involved with GT-IDEA will gain experience by working on real industry issues, engaging in case studies and competitions, and interacting with risk assessment and management practitioners from Grant Thornton, according to IU. The firm says the approach to learning at the institute will prepare students to become the next generation of effective industry leaders.

"Business leaders of tomorrow will succeed by managing a wide range of risks through technology and innovation," said Mike McGuire, chief executive officer of Grant Thornton. "GT-IDEA will give students the multidisciplinary acumen they'll need to lead the dynamic companies of the future."

IU says initiatives at GT-IDEA will focus on measuring, quantifying and predicting risk, including data-analytics-infused business risk assessment and management. It will also work to automate data exploration for risk management.

"Interdisciplinary learning is crucial in deepening understanding and critical thinking," said Lauren Robel, provost at IU Bloomington. "We are incredibly grateful to Grant Thornton for providing the opportunity for our SPEA, SICE and Kelley students to engage with peers and faculty across units in exploring risk assessment and management. Our students' understanding of the topic will develop significantly through this multiperspective exploration, and the mentoring from Grant Thornton leaders will be invaluable in opening students' minds to present-day issues within the field."

Srikant Sastry, an IU alumnus and national managing principal and leader of advisory services for Grant Thornton, will serve on the executive steering committee for GT-IDEA. Aurpon Bhattacharya and Ward Melhuish from the firm will serve as the program's primary corporate liaisons and work with the associate deans from all three schools.

You can learn more about the initiative by clicking here.