Monday, 25 May, 2020
The Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) COVID-19 Digital Sprint Hackathons initiative is inviting environmental researchers, health experts, social science experts and data specialists to join a Digital Sprint - an interconnected series of urgent activities - in June and July 2020. NERC is delivering the activities in partnership with 'Digital Champions' at Cranfield University. The aim is to respond to the COVID-19 situation and gain novel ideas and contributions from the research and innovation community to provide practical solutions and identify new issues as they emerge.
Entrants will work together or individually to draw from key NERC digital assets and datasets to consider the environmental impacts and consequences of COVID-19 and create a wealth of open, digital, environmental solutions to understand and address the pandemic. The aim is to consider two focal areas:
The Digital Sprint will leverage cutting-edge technology to support environmental solutions and draw on the capabilities of the NERC community of environmental scientists in support of solutions to the COVID-19 crisis. There will also be interaction with key experts and datasets from health and social science disciplines. The initiative will help develop and inform NERC's programmatic response to the COVID-19 challenges within the digital environment framework.
NERC will run:
The hackathons and Kaggle challenge will have awards offered to the best 'environmental digital solution' that helps to understand and address the COVID-19 impact. The hackathon and challenge details are as follows:
Hackathon One - Air Quality, running 1 to 5 June
Hackathon Two - Recovery, running 15 to 19 June
Hackathon Three - Ecosystem Services, running 29 June to 3 July
Kaggle Challenge - Visualising Risk, running 15 June to 10 July
On completion of the activities, entrants will have developed one (or more) prototype digital solution that showcases the approach to the challenge. This will then be presented to the judging panel.
The competitions are open to entrants with expertise in the environmental sciences. It is also anticipated that entrants from other disciplines will take part (including engineering, humanities, medicine, bioinformatics, computer science and data science). NERC encourages the formation of teams and the adoption of a multidisciplinary approach. Individuals are also welcome to enter. All entrants are encouraged to compete in more than one event.
For each hackathon and the Kaggle Challenge, the following prizes are offered:
Entrants will be provided with open access to the NERC environmental data centre holdings and will have further signposting to the emerging bodies of open COVID-19-related data.
Entrants must register using the online form and specify which event is being entered (ie Hackathon One, running 1 to 5 June, Hackathon Two, running 15 to 19 June, Hackathon Three, running 29 June to 3 July, or the Kaggle Challenge, running 15 June to 10 July). The final day of each event is the last day that entries can be submitted for that particular category.
More information about this research funding opportunity and the application process is available on the RESEARCHconnect funding information platform. RESEARCHconnect provides up-to-the minute content, insight and analysis on research funding news and policy. To find out more about how RESEARCHconnect can keep you in the know, and subscription fees, contact us today.