Discovery Communications and Civis Analytics have formed a partnership to explore the greater implications of big data and predictive analytics across Discovery's global portfolio of television networks.

The idea is to better use big data to better inform marketing, media, development and scheduling decisions for all of Discovery's networks.

"Discovery is expanding our data-driven decision making and this partnership allows us to leverage Civis' world class expertise to track the behaviour of our superfans across platforms and day parts, build stronger consumer engagement across our brands, and grow Discovery's expertise in addressability with more precise marketing," said David Leavy, chief communications officer at Discovery Communications.

Over the coming months, the partnership will focus on a range of both strategic and tactical initiatives from predictive targeting and data infrastructure to ratings forecasting and marketing spend optimisation, using the Civis Media Optimizer platform.

"The dynamics of the industry are undoubtedly changing as more data becomes available and shifts how companies are able to solve their business problems," said Peter Bouchard, director of media at Civis. "We're excited to announce this partnership with Discovery and look forward to helping them use data to transform who they are, what they do, and how they understand their connection with viewers."